First female African-American Danvile police officer dies at 77

Police chief who hired her remembers her for 'impressive' interview, personality


DANVILLE, Va. – People in Danville are remembering the city's first African-American female police officer.

According to her obituary, Mildred "Millie" Burnett died Dec. 29 at the age of 77.

Funeral services for the North Carolina native were held Wednesday.

Former Danville police chief Neal Morris hired her and another female officer at the same time, and says he's glad he did.

"The other person's last name was Garcia, so we felt like we got a start on diversity in the department," Neal said. "We thought they would help us attract other females, which I think really worked out for us."

When asked what he remembers about Burnett, he said her smile, her interview and her personality.

"She was impressive during the interview process because she had this beautiful smile and she had this personality that was just unbelievable. That's the kind of person I wanted as a police officer," Neal said.

Burnett leaves behind a daughter, five grandchildren and one great-grandson.