Patrolman Frank Sam Potestio

Patrolman Frank Sam Potestio

Denver Police Department, Colorado

End of Watch Friday, November 22, 1918

Add to My Heroes

Frank Sam Potestio

Patrolman Frank Potestio died after contracting the Spanish Influenza while in the performance of his duties.

He and other officers had been assisting the Police Surgeon and Coroner with moving corpses of victims and other tasks due to the outbreak of influenza in the city.

At least 30 police officers, including the police chief, had come down with influenza and were confined to their homes. In October and November of 1918, over 6,000 citizens were diagnosed with the Spanish Influenza in Denver, with 500 deaths.

Patrolman Potestio served with the Denver Police Department for nine years.

Effects of Spanish Flu on Law Enforcement

From 1918 to early 1919, the Spanish Flu pandemic infected an estimated 500 million people worldwide—about one-third of the planet’s population—and killed approximately 675,000 Americans. Many officers contracted this virus due to the requirements of their job.

The names of every officer who died in the line of duty from the Spanish Flu will likely never be known, but ODMP researchers continue to uncover new cases as part of our mission to never forget the fallen.

Please click here to view ODMP's Spanish Flu memorial listing all known fallen officers from the pandemic.


  • Age 42
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Duty related illness
  • Incident Date Wednesday, November 20, 1918

communicable disease, Spanish Influenza

Most Recent Reflection

View all 1 Reflections

“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
Matthew 5:9

Chris Di Gerolamo
Federal Air Marshal Service

June 15, 2022

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.