Greg Armstrong went attended high school in McAlester with Rocky Eales, then they trained together at the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Academy. Both men were eligible to retire last year, but decided against it. At 49 years of age, Eales believed had more to give. Five more years at the O-H-P would mean more money for his kids' college and
retirement. "We completed our 20th year with the patrol in January this year, but Rocky and myself, we decided to continue on because we both loved the job," remembered Armstrong.
Friends say Eales was crazy about his wife Kelly, his six-year old daughter Allison, and two-year old son Mackie. He put his family first. Trooper Eales lived most of his life in McAlester. He and his family are well respected. The football stadium is named after his father, a longtime McAlester coach.
Oklahoma lost a devoted law officer when Eales died last night, but his family and friends say he was much more. "He believed in people, and that's part of this job," Armstrong said. "You have to believe in people. He never met a stranger. He always had time for anybody, especially kids. He'd always take that extra minute to talk to them."