Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Police Officer James J. Ramp

Philadelphia Police Department, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Tuesday, August 8, 1978

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Police Officer James J. Ramp

Jim Ramp was a member of the instructor cadre of my childhood Young Marines group. He was a kind, warm-hearted and professional police officer, a Marine's Marine, and one of the finest men I ever knew. He was a role model on a par with my Dad, and still is.

Barry E. McClung, FF/EMTP(Ret)

August 8, 2018

Remembered and respected always. RIP

PPD Stakeout Unit/SWAT 1986-2001

June 22, 2018

Never forgotten by those who remember that tragic day. God Bless Officer James Ramp and his family.

Jim McKinley
Philadelphia Citizen (age 14 at time of event)

June 20, 2018

So sad and no justice. Philadelphia's DA pushed for one of the killers to be released. As of today, miss africa was paroled. Im soo sorry for this officers family and pray they stay positive, even though it will be hard. This officer will always be remembered as a hero who lost his life protecting the city that he loved.

Philadelphia pd

June 20, 2018

So sad and no justice. Philadelphia's DA pushed for one of the killers to be released. As of today, miss africa was paroled. Im soo sorry for this officers family and pray they stay positive, even though it will be hard. This officer will always be remembered as a hero who lost his life protecting the city that he loved.

Philadelphia pd

June 19, 2018

Gunnery Sergeant Jimmy Ramp was a real positive in our USMC Reserve Battalion (3rd Bn, 14th Marines). Semper Fi!

Capt Bill Odle

May 22, 2016

My husband was another police officer on duty in Powelton Village that day. I was in grad school at Temple U. It was a terrifying morning. KYW News told that a police officer was murdered but withheld the namr until the widow could be notified. It was several nerve-wracking hours before my husband was able to call and tell me he was safe. (Remember, cell phones were still 2 decades away.)

My heart still aches for Mrs. Ramp, who lost her beloved husband so suddenly and wrongly.

Dorine Houston
Widow of a police officer present for both 1978 and 1985 confrontation

May 15, 2015

I remember that day. I was a kid. Many of my neighbors were Phila. police officers. I was so sad to hear of your passing. I felt, and still do feel so badly for your family.MOVE were scum and cowards, hiding as they shot. You were SO brave. Never forgotten. RIP.

Philadelphia native

March 19, 2015

One did die in prison - William Phillips Africa died in prison on Jan. 10, 2015. While he was in prison his son, Philip Delmar, was killed in the May 13, 1985 MOVE siege in Cobbs Creek area. He was serving 30-100 years for the shootout in which Officer Ramp died. He was married to Jeanene Phillips Africa (all MOVE members have that same surname) who is also serving 30-100 for the same incident at 33rd & Pearl in Powelton Village in Philadelphia on August 8, 1978. RIP officer.

Doug Easterly, private citizen
I currently work three blocks away now

January 15, 2015

I was 12 when the first MOVE confrontation happened. My parents had friends who were in the police department; they were on vacation with us in Sea Isle, NJ, but were called back to the city on that dark day. God bless Officer Ramp; may he be remembered always.

John Higgins

July 24, 2014

God bless you Sir! Thank you for your honorable service to your country and for making the ultimate sacrifice to a grateful city. You are not forgotten nor will you ever be. You live on in the memories of all those who served with you, and will always be in the hearts and minds of all who knew you. What you did in life does echo through eternity! Semper Fi, Sir!

Retired Detective Warren Lockley

May 19, 2014



May 13, 2014

Uncle Jimmy was my Godfather. As a young boy, I remember all of Marine get-togethers especially between my Dad, Uncle Jimmy, and Uncles Mike and Bob, all of whom served together in the Corps. I guess it was all of that upbringing which led me to join the Marines and serve in Vietnam. You are a true HERO in every sense of the word and embodied what Courage and Bravery stand for. You and Helen rest peacefully together and will never be forgotten.

Phil Tomachio, Jr.
Sgt., USMC (formerly)

June 12, 2013

I am 49 years old and working on a Masters Degree studying conflict resolution. We studied the story of MOVE and it took me back to growing up in Philadelphia. Officer Ramp was a hero of mine when I was about 9 or 10 years old and in the Young Marines that met at the USMC reserve center on Woodhaven road. I just wanted to honor his service and thank him for devoting his time and energy. God bless you Officer Ramp

Chief Petty Officer Molina USN RET

March 13, 2013

Warrior and Hero!!!


March 23, 2012

Rest in peace and god bless you.

Lt JPease
Brentwood P.D.

February 1, 2012

my cousin's son plays his first football game today for father judge high school at RAMP field.i hear everyone saying 'i'll meet you at ramp'.well i decided to give them all a history lesson on the naming of this field and they were all shocked by the tragic way RAMP field came to be named. Officer James Ramp was killed in the line of duty by a bunch of thugs who didnt want to live as humans.he was shot by cowards who hid behind walls.God bless Jimmy Ramp and all our men and ladies who protect us day in and day out.

lou novak private citizen

September 11, 2010

Your heroism and service is honored today, the 32nd anniversary of your death. Your memory lives and you continue to inspire. Thank you for your service. My cherished son Larry Lasater was a fellow police officer murdered in the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer. My son was also a fellow Marine so I also bid you semper fidelis. You lived that motto.

I pray for solace for all those who love and remember you for I know both the pain and pride are forever. To read about your valor was to read about a testiment to both courage and selflessness. Rest In Peace

Phyllis Loya
mother of fallen officer Larry Lasater

August 8, 2010

a true hero. thank you for all your service. we are coming up on 30 years and yet the pain and depth of admiration in these reflections still resonates so strongly and brings tears to my eyes. yes, a true hero indeed.

semper fi


August 6, 2008

Never Forgotten.

P/O #7426

May 4, 2008

I was 8 years old/on the 5th year anniversary I remember more shown..But on that day of August 8 ,1978..I had no school- just watching television.I was a kid, but I understood. I saw exactly what you did to prevent further chaos..and in doing so, sacrificed your life. My Dad was there- I found out later..he was one of the mounted officers called when chaos broke out. Honorable P/O Ramp, hope that the public understands the risk every first responder takes..every day,,five days a week (at least)


April 25, 2008

To the Ramp family and his extended family - those he served with in the PD and the Corps. I did not know Jimmy personally, but shortly after his horrible death on-duty I was transferred to the Stakeout Unit. During my early days there, I was assigned to work with several different outstanding Stakeout officers patrolling the streets of Philadelphia. Numerous times the different officers would take me by the site of the MOVE confrontation. We would stop in our patrol vehicle and the officer I was with, my partner for that shift, would reflect on the day of this battle. Many of them were there that day, or were on-duty but elsewhere. All of them had great things to say about Jimmy. They honored him for the true hero that he was. I never discussed the different stories with any of the other officers - each of their stories were deep and personal - not something for me to repeat to anyone. Just about all of my visits with these different officers ended the same way - with a quiet, respectful silence that said more than any words. These were my mentors that prepared me well for my time in the Stakeout Unit, and Jimmy was certainly their mentor. God's blessing to all. Rest in peace James J. Ramp, you were never forgotten.

P/O Harry M. #2027
PPD, Retired

February 22, 2008

"The Badge"

He starts his shift each day
To respond to calls unknown.
He drives a marked patrol car.
A police officer he is known.

He's paid by the citizens' taxes
To make it safe on the streets.
But he usually has a second job
'Cause a waitress has his salary beat.

Now he doesn't know a holiday
'Cause he works all year round.
And when Thanksgiving and Christmas finally arrive
At his home he cannot be found.

He's cursed and assaulted often,
The one whos blood runs blue.
He seldom ever gets a thanks,
To some he's just a fool.

His friends are always other cops
'Cause people just don't understand
That underneath his badge and gun,
He's just another man.

He knows there might not be a tomorrow
In this world of drugs and crime.
And he gets so mad at the court system
'Cause the crooks don't get any time.

And each day when he leaves for work,
He prays to God above.
Please bring me home after my shift
So I can see the ones I love.

But tonight he stops a speeding car,
He's alone down this ole' highway.
It's just a little traffic infraction.
He does it everyday.

Well, he walks up to the driver's window,
And his badge is shining bright.
He asked the guy for a driver's license,
When a shot rang through the night.

Yes, the bullet hit its mark,
Striking the officer in the chest.
But the Department's budget didn't buy
Each officer a bullet-proof vest.

So he lay on the ground bleeding.
His blood wasn't blue - His blood was red.
And briefly he thought of his loved ones
'Cause in a moment the officer was dead.

In the news they told the story
Of how this officer had died.
And some who listened cared less,
But those who loved him cried.

Well, they buried him in uniform
With his badge pinned on his chest.
He even had his revolver,
He died doing his best.

Written By:
David L. Bell
Richland County Sheriff's Department
Columbia, South Carolina
Used with Special Permission of the Author
Copyright © 1999 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

Investigator David L Bell
Richland County Sheriff's Dept., Columbia, SC

January 24, 2008

For fellow historians: MOVE member William Phillips, a.k.a. Phil Africa, allegedly bought the weapon that was used to kill Officer Ramp.

Who knew? - In May of 1985, the Philadelphia Police Department faced this same radical organization in what became one of the most tragic incidents involving law enforcement, and led to the appointment of Philadelphia Police Commissioner Willie L. Williams.

After the civil unrest here in 1992 here in Los Angeles, Williams replaced Chief Daryl F. Gates. I did much research on groups such as M.O.V.E., the Black Panthers and others. I appeared on radio shows with some of them as well as with Chief Williams who actually made a videotape congratulating me when I was promoted to a Marine Corps Major. I only regret that before Chief Williams left Los Angeles, I never had the opportunity to discuss the murder of Officer Ramp via the radio airwaves.

Devil Dawg Ramp: May Your Soul Rest-In-Peace.

Maj M. B. Parlor

August 8, 2007

You will never be forgotten sir.

Cpl/1 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police

August 8, 2007

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.