Police Officer Jon A. Ryckman

Police Officer Jon A. Ryckman

Detroit Police Department, Michigan

End of Watch Friday, June 28, 1974

Jon A. Ryckman

Officer Jon Ryckman and Officer Byron Soule were killed when their police aircraft collided with another aircraft over the Detroit River.

Officers Ryckman and Soule, Jr. were members of the Detroit Police Department’s aviation unit. Officer Ryckman as a pilot and Officer Soule, Jr., as an observer. Both officers had been working together for about a year and were primarily assigned to the airspace over Detroit’s eastside neighborhoods.

Around 12:45 a.m. on Friday, June 28, 1974, they were patrolling the east side and began heading towards Belle Island, a municipal park that sits on the Detroit River along the border with Windsor, in Canada. As they approached airspace on the river, a D-18 Beechcraft began to have engine problems and descended into an emergency landing. As the owner and pilot of the aircraft did this, he struck the officers' helicopter hard but continued his descent and crash landed at the Detroit City Airport.

Officer Ryckman and Officer Soule, Jr., a nine-year veteran of the force, plunged straight into the river, dying either in the air or upon impact. The Detroit Police Department hastily organized a rescue effort and were able to find Officer Ryckman soon after by dredging the river. It took through the morning to locate Officer Soule, Jr. The officers were the first fatalities of the department's aviation unit.

Officer Ryckman was a three-year veteran of the force. He is survived by his wife.

Bio

  • Age 26
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge 4169

Incident Details

  • Cause Aircraft accident

helicopter crash

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Time may have passed but you are not forgotten. I believe as long as someone remembers you or speaks your name, you are still with us.
Thank you for your heroism.
GOD Bless

Detention Officer A.Zambito
Texas

July 4, 2015

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