Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Senior Trooper Michael Joseph Rao

South Carolina Highway Patrol, South Carolina

End of Watch Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Senior Trooper Michael Joseph Rao

To the Rao family. Please accept my sincere condolences in the loss of your son, husband and father. I recently lost my brother and I know that the hurt never goes away, you just learn to live with it. May God bless you all.

Investigator Paula Martinez
Texas Juvenile Justice Department

December 22, 2014

Mike,

Your friends in Manning and Clarendon County helped us to freshen up your marker on I95 SB at 125 mm. We put a new cross and trimmed the trees and brush around your marker. We want people to recognize the sacrifice you made for the citizens of South Carolina. We love you and miss you more every day.

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother

August 26, 2014

I am getting to know your beautiful middle school daughter. She is a joy. You would be proud

Linda Moore
Friend of family

June 19, 2014

Mike,
Can't believe it's been 12 years. Thank you for your service and sacrifice. RIP my brother.

Lin

Inv T.O. (Lin) Ham, Retired
Clarendon County Sheriffs Office

June 12, 2014

Regretfully, I did not know Mike personally, but by knowing Sal & Lois, I DO know the kind of man he was unquestionably. His wonderful legacy continues in his daughter and in all who knew him. South Carolina was so fortunate to have Mike as one of its finest.

Fran Bundy
Family Friend

March 20, 2014

Thank you, Joseph, for what you did to help our son, Mike. It is good Samaritans like you who helped our son on that fateful day. He succumbed to his injuries two days later, and we have been living with this loss. We are dedicating our lives to helping other families and are now active with Concerns of Police Survivors. Thank you for your service to the citizens of South Carolina, and thank you for being God's helper!

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother

February 18, 2014

I was there when the accident happened. I was the truck driver that ran back to help get the truck off of you. I was the one that made the radio call from your patrol car. I was the one praying over you. I don't know if I could have done more for you to help you but if I could have please forgive me for not doing it. You were just helping a broke down motorist when the crash happened. It has been nearly 13 years and I still think of that day. I also still pray for your family. Especially your daughter. May God be with your family while you are with God. Maybe one day we will meet in person and have a heavenly conversation. I know we will not remember that day in heaven so it will be out of the conversation but I am sure we will have a great time. God Bless You and your family.

SPC. Joseph L. Baumgardner II
SC Army National Guard/ By stander

January 19, 2014

Son,

It is difficult to believe that you have been gone for eleven years now. It was Father's Day 2002 that we buried you. Since then, our lives haven't been the same.

You would be so proud of the many officers with whom we made contact who knew you, worked with you, went to school with you, went to the CJA with you, or worked with you on the SCHP.

Your brothers and sisters in blue will never forget you nor your service to the State of South Carolina. For that we are very thankful and appreciative.

Rest in peace, son. We'll see you in the "blink of an eye."

Love,
Mom

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother of SCHP Senior Trooper Michael J. Rao

June 16, 2013

Just wanted to let you know that I had the opportunity to meet your AMAZING parents this week in Charleston, SC. The kindness and the love that they showed me this week will never be forgotten, and has changed my life.

I am a Sgt. with the Cobb County Sheriff's Office in Georgia, and am also a surviving victim of a Line of Duty death. Georgia State Trooper Chad LeCroy was taken from us December 27, 2010. With the help of people like your mother and father, I know that I can began the healing process and be a positive force should a tragedy hit my department.

Thank you for your sacrifice, Rest In Peace. You will forever be a part of who I am as a LEO.

Sgt. Drew Gordon
Cobb County (GA) Sheriff's Office

January 11, 2013

To fully appreciate the heroes of the present, we must recognize our heroes of the past. Your heroism and service is honored today, the 10th anniversary year 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 who was murdered in the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer.

Time never diminishes respect. Your memory will always be honored and revered. Rest In Peace

I pray for solace for all those that love and remember you for I know both the pain and pride are forever.

Phyllis Loya
Mom of fallen California Officer Larry Lasater, Pittsburg PD, eow 4/24/05

November 18, 2012

We went to the marker on I95 on the tenth anniversary of your passing. You would have been very moved by the number of law enforcement officers who came to pay respects to you and to honor all fallen officers. The Sheriff and the mayor of Manning were also there. Your brothers in blue are terrific and have been there for us every step of the way, and I know that you would have been very proud of them.

Rest in peace, son, and know that we will be along "in the blink of an eye."

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother of SCHP Senior Trooper Michael J. Rao, EOW 6.12.02

June 16, 2012

Sal and Lois,
Thinking of you today.
Love,
Debbie

Debbie Brewer
friend

June 12, 2012

Mike,

I feel honored to have known a hero such as you. Rest peacefully my brother.

Lin

Inv T.O. (Lin) Ham
Clarendon County Sheriff's Office

March 29, 2012

Another Christmas without you! You'd be so proud of your daughter--she is a sweetheart!

We miss you and can't wait until we are together again!

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother, SCHP Sr. Trooper Michael J. Rao, EOW June 12, 2002

December 26, 2011

I wish I had gottan more time to meet u before God called you home. I now that you would have been the best dad ever and I wish you were still here I am eleven now and miss you more than ever. I'll see you again one day love you

Megan
Daughter

September 26, 2011

This will be our eighth Christmas without you! Mike, you remain in our thoughts and prayers, and you will not be forgotten!

We love you always!

Mom

December 16, 2009

7yrs ago today I lost my best friend. Boy if you didn't know Mike you missed out. But if you did you were forever blessed. We will always love you Mike.

Chris Broach

Anonymous

June 12, 2009

You are not forgotten by those who love you.

Anonymous

January 10, 2009

The only thing that can remove the sting of death is knowing He is with the
Lord Jesus and you will see him again someday. Praise the Lord!
Lynn Kole
Bellingham, WA

Anonymous

August 30, 2008

How can it be six years? It seems like it was yesterday that we received the telephone call that you had been injured and were being airlifted to Richland Memorial.

You are constantly in our thoughts and remain in our hearts--that will never change! Your SCHP family has been wonderful, and all of the agencies with which you have had contact remember you in the best ways. They all miss you and your wonderful sense of humor.

You are missed by family, friends, and your brothers and sisters in the thin blue line.

Watch for us, Mike. We'll be along in the blink of an eye.

Much love,
Mom

Lois Rao
Surviving Mother

June 12, 2008

Came across your name somewhere on the many pages of heroes listed at this site and I wanted to stop at your page and leave a reflection to thank you for your service to others. You will never be forgotten by those that love you for they carry your memory forever in their hearts. There are no special words of comfort I can offer them except that I know their daily pain and to take one day at a time, thats all any of us can do. You have not been forgotten.

Bob Gordon
Father of Chicago Officer: Michael P. Gordon, EOW: 8/8/04

April 20, 2008

DEAR MIKE,
MY HEART WAS BROKEN WHEN I HEARD THE NEWS OF YOUR ACCIDENT. I WAS SO LUCKY TO HAVE SEEN YOU, JAN AND MEGAN AT THE BEACH AND AT SUPPER NOT LONG BEFORE YOUR DEATH. YOU WERE SUCH A GREAT GUY. I'LL NEVER FORGET ONE OF YOUR FAVORITE SAYINGS
"LOVE YA, MEAN IT" IF YOU HAD AN ENEMY, I DON'T KNOW WHO IT WAS.I STILL MISS YOUR SENSE OF HUMOR AND WISH YOU HAD NEVER LEFT LANCASTER PD. YOU HAVE A BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER. I HOPE TO SEE YOU AGAIN ONE DAY BUT UNTIL THEN "LOVE YOU, MEAN IT".

TCO SYBIL A ROBINSON
FORMER DISPATCHER AND FRIEND

March 5, 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
Sergeant
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

November 16, 2007

Mike,
You were a good office and you are still remembered today. You were a good man. Thank you for serving the state.

September 15, 2007

Just wanted to leave a note to let you all know that you are in our thoughts this week.

Brian Jackson's family EOW 11-13-2005
friends

June 12, 2007

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