November 1, 2020
Michael J. Radzilowski (“Chief Razz”) was the first son of Stanley and Catherine Radzilowski and grandson of Thomas and Margaret Farley. He was the grandson of Stosh and Lottie Radzilowski who emigrated to the United States from Poland and Russia in the early 1900s and settled in the coal mining hills near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Michael graduated from Mount Calvary Catholic Elementary School and Bishop McNamara Catholic (Jesuit) High School in Forestville, Maryland. Upon graduation he joined the District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department and shortly thereafter received his draft notice and was drafted by the United States Army, chosen at random by a little white plastic ball that popped from a hopper cage into the hands of a man at the local draft board and bore Mike’s day of birth. On March 17, 1970, as the United States was escalating the number of young troop draftees sent to fight a war in the jungles of Vietnam, his mother drove him to Baltimore, Maryland, where he was inducted into the Army. As he got out of the car, she handed him a metal necklace bearing a miraculous medal of Mother Mary for good luck and safe passage, a necklace which he wore for the rest of his life. His service in law enforcement lasted 46 years. He served in the Metropolitan Police Department, Washington D.C., for thirty-one years in a variety of assignments including, the Sixth District, the Capitol Hill Neighborhood, Uniform Patrol, Detectives, Morals Division and Management. He began his career in 1970, at the age of 20, after he served in the U.S. Army as a Military Policeman, Guard and Watchman. He was promoted through the ranks, eventually serving as Commander (Deputy Chief of Police) of the Special Operations Division. As Commander of the Special Operations Division he commanded the SWAT Team, Bomb Unit, Marine Unit, Helicopter Unit, Canine Unit, Civil Disturbance Unit, Motorcycle Unit and the Special Events Branch which was responsible for the security and police escort for the President of the United States, Vice President and other Heads of State as well as all other special events occurring in Washington D.C., such as demonstrations (e.g., Million Man March, 50th Anniversary of NATO), parades (4th of July), festivals, sporting events and Film and Television production permits. He instituted the Community Policing Program in the Capitol Hill area of Washington, D.C., which focused on reducing crime and quality of life issues through partnership with government and citizens to solve long and short-term problems. His program served as a model for the rest of the city. Over the course of his career he worked collaboratively with and received training from the DEA, FBI and United States Secret Service. If you ever saw a policeman in white gloves enthusiastically directing cars out of gridlock during morning rush hour in Washington, D.C., smiling and waving his hands and arms with the aplomb of a great jazz dancer in the early 1970s, that might have been Razz. He retired from the District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department in 2001 and moved to Sarasota, Florida, to look after his widowed mother, who he cared for until her death from Alzheimer’s in 2016. Shortly after he moved to sunny Florida with his wife Elizabeth and his youngest son Mike, he was appointed by Mayor Wayne C. Poston to serve as the Chief of Police of the City of Bradenton, Florida, the "Friendly City," a beautiful gulf coast city, which he came to adopt as his second hometown. From 2002 until 2016, Michael J. Radzilowski was the Chief of Police for the City of Bradenton Police Department. When in Bradenton as Police Chief he spearheaded a community policing programs and hiring diversity in the department. He also periodically worked each shift (morning, days and midnights), alongside his officers and civilian team members to be able to understand what was happening on the front lines to better manage the department and to better protect the safety and welfare of the officers and other staff as well as that of the community at large. He served on the Board of the area Law Enforcement Training Academy. He always tried to lift everyone’s spirits with his occasional teasing and wry sense of humor. He also shared his passion for his calling and the highest mission of law enforcement in a democracy, which is to serve and protect the dignity and the rights of all people, in a place where no man or woman is above the law. In retirement Chief Radzilowski continued to be a member of Florida Police Chiefs Association (FPCA), a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the Association of Retired Police Officers of the District of Columbia. He was recently elected as a life time member of the Tampa Bay Chiefs of Police Association. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church Osprey, Florida chapter. He was also a member of the Venice, Florida, Classic Car Club and a devotee of 1955 Belair Chevys, 1970 Chevy Impalas, and 1966 GTOs. He was a big fan of the original Perry Mason TV series (with actor Raymond Burr) as well as most of the police procedural TV shows made since the 1950s. Beloved father to Ryan Ardell Radzilowski, Jeff Radzilowski (Kelly Fowler), Lauren Whiteaker (Russell), and Michael F. Radzilowski (Christie Van Ekasingh), and beloved Grandfather to Ryan A. Vital, Maya J. Radzilowski, Ella R. Radzilowski, Reed N. Whiteaker and Regan R. Whiteaker. Beloved husband of Elizabeth Boyle Radzilowski. Beloved brother of Linda A. Newman, Suzanne Erb (Harry), Joseph Radzilowski (deceased), Stanley A. Radzilowski, Kathleen Lalicata (Michael) and Daniel Radzilowski. Beloved brother-in-law of Mary B. Boyle, Ben Boyle (Lucyna), Pat Boyle (Pam), Margaret Wells Williams and Jay Wells (Valerie). Uncle of Michele L. Newman, Denise Radzilowski, Tarome J. Radzilowski, Shawn Radzilowski (deceased) , Brandon Radzilowski, Kristin Radzilowski Bubar (Brandon), Luke, Scarlett and Francis Bubar, Joseph Radzilowski Kucek, Stephen Gusman (Rebecca), Delaney Catherine Radzilowski, Melissa Boan Gamble, Lexie Vankampen (daughter Catherine Vankampen), Anthony Vankampen, Aliyah James, Kaylin and Kaylee McBride, Justice Gamble, David Harker, Fallyn Harker, Brittany Harker, Brea Raposa,Michael Boyle, Megan Boyle Fernandez (Ross) Ellie Ann and Olivia Mae Fernandez, Joseph P. Boyle, Lindsey Williams McCray (Jarvis), Terrance, Jayce and Cameron McCray, Sarah Renfroe (David), Ian, Beau and Cohen Renfroe, Kate G. Williams (Megan S. Langan), Porter H. Wells, John E. Wells V (Zavannah) and Brett Wells. Sunday, November 15th - Viewing Service at Toale Brothers in Sarasota, FL • 40. N Orange Ave, Sarasota, FL 34239 • 4:00 - 8:00 PM viewing • Toalebrothers.com Monday, November 16th - Mass Service at Our Lady of Mount Carmel • 425 S, Tamiami Trail, Osprey, FL 34229 • 9:00 AM ~ 10:00 AM Casket Viewing Wake inside the church • 10:00 AM Funeral Mass service • https://www.olmc-osprey.org/ Monday, November 16th - Funeral Service and Burial at Sarasota National Cemetery • 9810 State Rd 72, Sarasota, FL 34241 • 2:00 PM funeral service and burial, advise to arrive by 1:30 • https://www.cem.va.gov/cems/nchp/sarasota.asp Covid19 Pandemic Restrictions to protect health and safety of all concerned: Please note that the indoor church ceremony is restricted to 300 persons who will be socially distanced and required to wear face masks and practice social distancing of at least 6 feet and advised to hand sanitization. At this time we are expecting good, dry, and not too cold weather on Monday, November 16. To this end the church provides two large outside out of doors porticos where persons are able to listen to the Mass by way of the public address PA system. Most important: Any person with underlying medical concerns or who is feeling ill or under the weather in any way is strongly advised to refrain from attending any event in person for their own protection and the protection of others.
Michael J. Radzilowski (“Chief Razz”) was the first son of Stanley and Catherine Radzilowski and grandson of Thomas and Margaret Farley. He was the grandson of Stosh and Lottie Radzilowski who emigrated to the United States from... View Obituary & Service Information
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