Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Patrolman Leaward Robert Rich

Richmond Police Department, Virginia

End of Watch Friday, December 13, 1974

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Reflections for Patrolman Leaward Robert Rich

Rest in peace Patrolman Rich.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

February 16, 2019

Patrolman Rich, Thank you for your outstanding service!

Maritime Security Officer Beverly Bowers
McRoberts Maritime Security agency

December 13, 2015

Hi Lee, I left you and Steve a nice memorial on Face Book . . you'd have liked it and also the picture of you and me with your suspect . . on Grace Street . we didn't even know that Detective Floyd Coleman took it until he gave them to us!! 38 years today Lee . . what would have been . .we'll never know . . but you accomplished more in your 5 years than most policemen would accomplish in a career . . hey buddy . . FIVE excellent police duty medals . . damn!

. . nobody else did that! You're the best Lee. I'll be at Fenway Park for some Sox games this spring . . give me a sign buddy! I'll check in with you soon . . "10-7" for now! Your buddy, Jim

ATF Agent Jim Crotty (Ret.)
Former Richmond, VA Policeman

December 13, 2012

Your heroism and service is honored today, the 37th 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.

Rest In Peace.

Phyllis Loya
mom of fallen California Officer Larry Lasater, PPD, eow 4/24/05

December 13, 2011

Hi Lee, I just got through visiting with Steve . . I was in Boston, MA not long ago, and thought about you constantly . . I'd be walking down a street and wonder to myself, I wonder if Lee walked "right here." At Fenway, I always wonder to myself, "If Lee were here, where would he be sitting?"

You and I shared a wonderful experience Lee (besides Boston:-) . . we were both partners with your eternal partner, E.H. "Steve" Stephenson . . you two were awesome . . if any of the street types thought they were going to get cut some slack, because I went to the detective division, and left 679, they grossly miscalculated!

You took my place and never missed a beat . . you and Steve, drug arrests, every night. every time I'd hear you call in a vehicle stop, I knew it'd only be a matter of a few minutes and you'd be calling for a wagon . . . drugs! You all kicked some serious ass . . . made serious contributions . . so many felony arrests . . . you all would suddenly appear in that pale green unmarked Plymouth, and wreck somebody's night :-) Never failed.

Okay buddy, I miss you and we talk about you all the time . . you were about the most hustling policeman I ever knew . . you and Steve . . . damn!
I'll check in with you soon . . our Red Sox had a miserable season . . . finished in 3rd . . Francona has been replaced by Bobby Valentine . . GO RED SOX!
I'll be "10-7" for now, but will check in soon. Please give the others my love and regards.

ATF Special Agent Jim Crotty (Ret.)
Close Friend/Fellow RPD Officer

December 13, 2011

Hey Lee! I just got done talking to Steve . . hope you were listening . . I believe you were. As I told Steve, you're name has been spoken and written more in the last year, than any year Lee. "Modern communications" has made it possible for all of us old warriors to communicate by computers, where ever we are! We constantly tell stories about you and brag on your accomplishments . . what a hell of a policeman you were . . you and Steve . . couldn't be 2 "partnered up policemen", anywhere . . anywhere . . as effective and "10-8" as you all were.

I miss you all stopping by the detective division when I'd get stuck with the midnight phone duty for a week . . just the 3 of us . . laughing, talking, telling war stories . . Steve with that unique Richmond Southern drawl . . and you Lee, with that ever so distinct Boston accent . . we all loved to hear you laugh and talk . . and so admired your energy and tenacity . . and I had direct personal knowledge of the greatest police partner that there could be . . your partner, Steve! What a team. I was so proud of you Lee.
Hey buddy, I was at Fenway Park 3 times last season,
watching our Boston Red Sox . . kept looking for a sign from you . . ya better give me one next season.

Lee, I spoke your name at the Broadway Fire Station, right by the Common. The talk turned to "police" and I told them about their native son, Lee Rich . . they were in awe. I still am Lee, and always will be. I'll be in touch during the year, and this time next year, be listening .. there will be some old Richmond Police talking to you . . most will be in Virginia, some in Massachusetts, and you can be assured, there will be one in Georgia. I love you buddy, rest easy blue angel. . you and Steve patrol those streets of gold, and as our friend John Bowman told me tonight, "you and Steve will be looking out for us, still here." I love you buddy, Jim

Jim Crotty
Close friend/Fellow Officer

December 13, 2010

The Richmond Police Department was a second home to my family over the years, having my grandfather, 2 great uncles, 1 uncle, 2 cousins and my father on serving on the RPD. The loss of a RPD officer for me is like loosing a family member. Although I did not know you personally, it is with great Respect and Gratitude that I say Thank You for your dedication to the City of RIchmond, the RPD and ultimately your greatest sacrifice protecting us all.

Vanessa Duling-St.Clair


December 13, 2010

You are not forgotten Patrolman Lee Rich. May God bless you and your family.

Kyle E. Barnette, DHS/ICE/SSA (Retired)

December 13, 2010

35 years tonight Lee, you and Steve. I miss you. Every time I'm in Boston, Mass., I feel your presence even more. Your good friend, Jim

Special Agent Jim Crotty (Ret.)
Bureau of ATF

December 13, 2009

As my career's end is coming closer, I decided to check and find those who had lost their lives during the year that I was hired. While it's been many years since your passing, I'm sure those you left behind and those whom with you served with distinction have kept you alive in their memories. Thank you for your service and for looking out for us who continue in our chosen profession. Rest in peace Patrolman Rich.

Sgt. Robert Mau Sr.
PD Joliet IL

December 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 © 1993 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

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

April 7, 2008

Hey Lee,

I just wrote to Steve, and naturally wanted to say "hey" to you, buddy. It was 33 years tonight Lee, that you and Steve were snatched away from all who loved you and would come to love you. You're still best damn yankee I've ever met. You and Steve . . . you with that unforgetable Boston accent and Steve with his slow & easy Southern drawl.

As I told Steve, Lee, you be listening for me at 2305 tonight because I'll be outside, all alone talking to y'all. I love you Lee, you were on of my closest friends . . ever! Rest easy blue angel. With brotherly love and utmost respect, Jim Crotty (Former Richmond, Virginia Police Officer and close friend of Lee Rich.)

Special Agent Jim Crotty
Bureau of Alchol, Tobacco & Firearms (Ret.)

December 13, 2007

You are remembered today and thank you Sir for your service

manchester, nh

December 7, 2007

Lee, my eternal close friend . . my brother. As with Steve, I think of you every day. I miss your presence, your genuine friendship and being with you and Steve in the streets. You're still the hardest charging, most aggressive policeman I've ever met. Everybody respected you so much buddy. I honor you so much. It's been 32 years, almost to the minute, since you and Steve were killed. Like Steve, you too would be retired now, if not for that fateful night. One thing I'm certain of . . . even in retirement, as you walked throu parking lots, you'd be glancing in the car's windows, looking for any hint of dope. I hope you're with Steve on Christmas day Lee . . . where ever you and he are, you'll be in my heart, my thoughts and prayers. I'll see y'all again, some day, and we'll all laugh and talk just as always. I'll still enjoy that Boston accent of yours! You and Steve continue to rest easy. As the great Chicago Bears running back, Walter Payton said, "You're not gone until you're forgotten. We'll never forget you, Steve and the others. I'll write to you soon friend.

With love and respect, Jim Crotty, former Richmond, VA Policeman, and close personal friend of Lee Rich.

Jim Crotty Special Agent
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms (Ret.)

December 13, 2006

Ptlmn. Lee,

Thank you Brother for your service and dedication to the City of Richmond. You are not forgotten. May you and Ptlmn. Stephenson continue to rest in eternal peace forever. You are a hero and heros never die. GOD bless you.

Senior Officer D. W. Reichhardt
Waverly PD, Va.

December 13, 2006

We express our deepest sympathy to the family, friends and all the members of the Richmond Police Department. We were made safer by his service and we all suffer their tragic loss. The family of Patrolman Rich deserves our appreciation and gratitude for their sacrifice. In the days to follow, may you be strengthened by the fact that Patrolman Rich is a man distinguished by exceptional courage and will always be admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities. You, your family and your sacrifice will never be forgotten.

Thomas Doyle
Cary Police Department, North Carolina

July 9, 2006

Lee, another year . . . 31 to the day. It's still hard to believe. As I wrote to Steve, I think of you every day. I'll never let your memory die. You were some kind of policeman Lee . . . a true warrior.

With utmost respect and brotherly love,
Jim Crotty (Former Richmond, VA Policeman and close friend of Lee Rich.)

Jim Crotty Special Agent (Ret.)
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms

December 13, 2005

Lee, 30 years ago tonight at 11:35 PM we lost you and Steve. I miss you both terribly. I'll be outside, talking to you and Steve later tonight. Listen for me buddy. I love you, Jim (Unit 679, we'll back 617 at 4th & Broad . . . ETA 2 minutes")

Jim Crotty Special Agent (Ret.)
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & firearms

December 13, 2004

Patrolman Rich,

Rest in Peace Brother, never forgotten.


July 10, 2004

Lee, my good friend and fellow Richmond Policeman. You are still the most aggressive, alert, tenacious and "10-8" Officer I have ever known. We had a great time policing the streets of Richmond. Your picture is in my home as is Stephenson's picture. I still can't believe we lost both of you that cold December 13, 1974 night. On every December 13th, at 11:31 P.M., the time the "Mayday" was broadcast, I go outside, alone, look to the heavens and talk to you and Steve . . . I hope you both hear me my friend.

Remember how after I transferred from the Task Force, you took my position with Steve, and when I was working the Detective desk that 1 midnight shift a month, you and Steve would always stop by and fill out your activity reports . . . and you 2 would tell me about your night's activities and Steve and I would tell you about some of are escapades . . . and we'd sit there and laugh 'till we cried . . . we were young . . . strong . . . we were on top of the world . . . we were Richmond Police . . . proud warriors . . . protecting the city and it's citizens. I miss those days . . . I miss you Lee . . . and Steve . . and Vernon, Alan, Harry . . . and all those other Richmond heroes. I miss that incredible New England accent of yours . . . you and Steve . . . he with his Southern drawl, you with your Boston accent . . . and what a team you were! Lt. Stuart Cook and I went to your funeral outside of Boston and the turn out for their native police son was overwhelming . . . Officers from all over New england . . . at least 1,000 uniformed officers . . . I hope you were watching buddy. You, Steve, and the others rest easy my brother . . . we've proudly taken up positions at your thin blue line "10-20." Patrol those streets of gold Lee . . . watch over us blue angel. We will never forget. With respect and love, your loyal friend, Jim Crotty (Richmond Police Officer 1972-1975)

Special Agent Jim Crotty
ATF (SA, Retired)

February 28, 2004

May God bless you and your family for all time. You will never be forgotten.


February 22, 2004

You were a good guy. I remember ...

Ret. Officer RB Wade
Richmond, Va., Police

August 28, 2003

Rest easy and God bless. You will not be forgotten. A hero lives forever.

Deputy M. Moore
Warren County S.O. (OH)

You will not be forgotten


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