Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Deputy U.S. Marshal William Francis Degan, Jr.

United States Department of Justice - United States Marshals Service, U.S. Government

End of Watch Friday, August 21, 1992

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Deputy U.S. Marshal William Francis Degan, Jr.

Rest in Peace, Thank you for service. Mark Gordon,SFC (RET) US Army, combat veteran. Retired Court Officer, Massachusetts Trial Court.

Mark Gordon,SFC (RET)
US Army, Massachusetts Trial Court

January 11, 2021

Rest in peace always knowing that your service and sacrifice will never, ever be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

August 21, 2020

Rest in peace Deputy US Marshal Degan.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

August 21, 2019

I was just watching a documentary about your ordeal sir, and your bravery will never be forgotten. Rest In Peace brother.

Police Officer S. Lund
Casper PD, WY

April 8, 2019

I will never forget the first time I met Bill Degan. He reported aboard for his first drill weekend at H&S Company, 1st battalion, 25th Marine regiment-495 Summer Street, South Boston. He was a "boot" second lieutenant and led the unit on a twenty mile force march at Myles Standish State Forest. Typical boot "second lieuy" or butter bars, he directed some wrong turns and twenty miles became a thirty mile march. Bill took full responsibility and stated that in the future he would delegate more authority to his seasoned staff. I had entered the unit in 1973, after having served two years of active duty and a deployment to Viet Nam. I believe Bill had arrived in 1974. The unit later relocated to Camp Edwards/Otis Air Force Base at Cape Cod. Bill, Sgt. Mike Dubois, and I would run the S-2 intelligence section and the Scout Target Acquisition platoon. In 1979 Mike Dubois and I transferred to N.A.S. South Weymouth and initially served as military police officers. We were later joined by Bill Degan. As we rose in rank, MSgt, Dubois would work in the intelligence section. Major Degan and I (1StSgt O'Donnell) worked in the Operations section. Two months before Bill's murder, he had been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and became the Commanding Officer of our Marine Wing Support Squadron!
I also recall Bill Degan as a rookie Marshall. I began my criminal justice career in 1973 as a jail officer at the Suffolk County (Charles Street) Jail. The jail had a government contract to house federal marshal prisoners. In 1976 I was forced into a resignation due to my exposing corruption within the jail. A month following my resignation the Sheriff was indicted and would resign. I would also see Bill frequently while I was employed in the U.S. Federal Protective Service in Boston (1979-1981). In 1981 I became a Police Officer in the City of Melrose and retired in 2018. I retired from the Marine Corps Reserve in 1999.
Rest In Peace Bill, you were truly the best.....Semper Fi!

1STSGT William O'Donnell-retired
Melrose Police,Badge 1 retired

April 22, 2018

Thank you for service and sacrifice.

B.T. Wilkes, E6
Army Veteran

August 22, 2017

Continue to rest in peace, Bill Degan.
My heart goes out to your family, on this sad day. On this day, 25 years ago we lost a true hero. You will not be forgotten.

Senior Inspector William Boothe
United States Marshals Service

August 21, 2017

Rest in Peace.

Lieutenant Ray Flores
N.Y.P.D. (retired)

August 21, 2017

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

Marshal Chris Di Gerolamo
Federal Air Marshal Service

April 21, 2017

Bill was my squad leader in SOG training-we became great friends afterwards. I hope to do an upcoming 50 mile bicycle ride in October in Conroe TX. It is my first big ride since my knee replacement. It benefits and honors police officers so my thoughts of Bill will pull me thru

Supervisory DUSM (retired)
US Marshals Serivice

August 21, 2016

I met Bill on 18 June 1972 we went through OCS together. We were commission together in August of that year. We went through TBS together. In March is 72 Bill received orders to camp Lejeune and I received orders to camp Pendleton, 7th Marines, 1srt Marine division. My deepest sympathy To his wonderful wife Karen who I was fortunate to be around while we were at Quantico. To his two sons I can only say that your dad was without a doubt the greatest guy I ever met. I hope someday I can meet you boys and shake your hand.
Bill Anderson I'll never forget you you're a great guy too maybe someday we can get together?
Rest in peace William, I know you're with the Lord now I can only hope I can meet you again
Marc Bernard, LTC Retired USAF
Mitchell, South Dakota

LTC Marc Bernard USAF Retired
Best Of Friends

July 19, 2016

I met Bill on 18 June 1972 we went through OCS together. We were commission together in August of that year. We went through TBS together. In March is 72 Bill received orders to camp Lejeune and I received orders to camp Pendleton, 7th Marines, 1srt Marine division. My deepest sympathy To his wonderful wife Karen who I was fortunate to be around while we were at Quantico. To his two sons I can only say that your dad was without a doubt the greatest guy I ever met. I hope someday I can meet you boys and shake your hand.
Bill Anderson I'll never forget you you're a great guy too maybe someday we can get together?
Rest in peace William, I know you're with the Lord now I can only hope I can meet you again
Marc Bernard, LTC Retired USAF
Mitchell, South Dakota

LTC Marc Bernard USAF Retired
Best Of Friends

July 18, 2016

I met Bill on 18 June 1972 we went through OCS together. We were commission together in August of that year. We went through TBS together. In March is 72 Bill received orders to camp Lejeune and I received orders to camp Pendleton, 7th Marines, 1srt Marine division. My deepest sympathy To his wonderful wife Karen who I was fortunate to be around while we were at Quantico. To his two sons I can only say that your dad was without a doubt the greatest guy I ever met. I hope someday I can meet you boys and shake your hand.
Bill Anderson I'll never forget you you're a great guy too maybe someday we can get together?
Rest in peace William, I know you're with the Lord now I can only hope I can meet you again
Marc Bernard, LTC Retired USAF
Mitchell, South Dakota

LTC Marc Bernard USAF Retired
Best Of Friends

July 18, 2016

I met bill when my family moved to Sqantum Ma. Quincy. April 1961 Bill was a straight up guy, easily liked. I joined the USMC in 1967 so I lost contact around that time. Not until some-other friends told me about his passing. I think about him along with my brother Chris who died in Vietnam in 1969, I wish to contact any family members so I can relay my condolences.

Sgt. Michael Mark Donahue
childhood friend

November 3, 2015

A POLICEMAN’S PRAYER - Teach me that sixty minutes make an hour, sixteen ounces a pound, and one hundred cents a dollar. Help me so to live that I can lay down at night with a clear conscience, without a gun under my pillow, and unhaunted by the faces of those to whom I have brought pain. Grant that I may earn my meal ticket on the square, and in earning it I may do unto others as I would have others do unto me. Deafen me to the jingle of tainted money and to the rustle of unholy skirts. Blind me to the faults of other fellow, but reveal to me my own. Guide me so that each night when I look across the dinner table at my family, who have been a blessing to me, I shall have nothing to conceal. Keep me young enough to laugh with little children, and sympathetic enough to be considerate of old age. And when comes the day of darkening shades and the smell of flowers, the tread of soft footsteps and the crunching wheels in the yard, make the ceremony short and the epitaph simple – “Here lays a man.” --Unknown

John D. Hall, Deputy U.S. Marshal, Ret'd
United States Marshal Service 1971-1998

February 21, 2013

On 18 June 1972, I met you Bill for the first time.
In the barracks at Marine Corps OCS Quantico, we were all scared as hell.
I stayed close to you and Marc Bernard and our friendship grew.
You made yourself a fine officer and a gentleman. I sadly, did not go on in the Corps.
May you rest in eternal peace. One day, I hope to see you and hear that thick Boston accent I love so well.

Bill Anderson, E-1, USMC

August 19, 2012

RIP Sir, A true American will never be forgotten.

James Kotke
Civilian / Former Officer
WSF Park Police (Wi.)

July 31, 2012

That was really nice. I'm sure Marshal Degan's family appreciates your kind and wonderful remembrance.

Michelle
USAO

June 8, 2012

I was a Marine Reservist under LtCol Degan's charge. I was only under his charge for about 1 year when he was killed. What I remember about him was that he was the nicest Officer and he was very tall (smile). He would take us on conditioning marches and to him this was just another stroll, but for us we were in a straight out sprint for miles. He was the kind of man you will never forget. I only new of him for a year and I have now been in the Marine Corps for 23 years and I still remember him and talk of him when I talk to my young troops. All I have to say is what a leader he was.

Staff Sergeant Pyburn
USMC

May 6, 2012

I became friends with Bill because our sons were on the same hockey team in Quincy, Ma. Bill and I clicked because I was a Boston Police Officer and a former Marine. As Bill said to me one day standing in a cold hockey rink "I guess we have crossed my of the same bridges". Went Bill was killed I did what I know he would have done for me an take his son Brian to every hockey practice. It was my honor to do so. Bill's parents and his wife Karen along with his other son Billy were at every game. Many years have passed now and I moved to Florida and have lost touch. I do know that his son Billy became a US marshal and I'm sure Bill would be very proud. Semper Fi my friend until we meet again.........

P.O. Alan McDonough

November 24, 2011

Sir,
By far the best CO that I ever had. I think of you often, I am proud to have served with you...and driven you around the STUMPS. I will see you again at the final roll call.

Semper Fi Brother!

MSgt Michael L. DuBois
United States Marine Corps Reserves

May 26, 2011

You will never be forgotten, Deputy. You died in the line of duty as a hero, our hero. Your life as a patriot, first as an outstanding Marine Officer, and finally as a distinguished Deputy US Marshal, epitomized the best of what America has to offer.
R.I.P.

John W. Jomp

March 11, 2011

Good cop,great Marine Officer-took care of his men.All of us miss him to this day.All around great guy.

Sgt John Butler
Chelsea Mass PD

January 11, 2011

I read of your death in a book just recently. I came here to pay my respects. I leave hoping and prayng for a better world.
Thankyou for your service marshal Degan.
Never forgotten brave Warrior Brother.
Be at peace with God.

Senior Constable
South Australia Police

December 16, 2010

William,
It was an honor for me to announce your name today during the Law Enforcement Memorial service in Idaho. May you rest easy. You are not forgotten.

#562
Boise Police

May 7, 2010

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