2023 Last Ring Notifications

2023 Last Ring Notifications

Steve Zielke #7097, Retired Dispatcher III, passed away at his home on May 10th, 2023, at the age of 64. Steve had started his career at 911 in 1979 in Kennewick. He went on to dispatch in Kent, Normandy Park, and Federal Way. His last 18 years were spent dispatching for the Seattle Police Department as a Call taker, Dispatcher, and Acting Chief Dispatcher from 2003 until his retirement in 2021. In his off-duty time, Steve devoted many years as a communications specialist with King County Search and Rescue, and as a disaster relief responder for the Red Cross. Memorial services are pending announcement.
William Karban #2342, Retired Seattle Sergeant Detective, passed away Friday May 5, 2023 at 86 years of age. Bill was hired on June 10, 1963 and retired on December 29, 1987 after 24 years of service. Per Bill’s wishes, there will not be a memorial service.
Dix Baker #1760, Retired Seattle Police Sergeant, passed away on Friday, April 28, 2023, just a couple weeks shy of his 90th birthday. Dix was hired on January 28, 1957 and retired after 26 years of service on May 12, 1983.
Al Rasmussen #1608, Retired Seattle Police Lieutenant, passed away on Saturday, April 27, 2023, at 94 years of age. Al was hired on January 3, 1955, and retired after 30 years of service on August 14, 1985.
Doug Carlson #6121, retired Seattle police officer, passed away on Wednesday, April 19th at sixty-four years of age. Doug was hired on August 4, 1995 and retired after twenty-four years of service on February 28, 2019.

David Severance #2381, Retired Seattle Police Officer Patrol, passed away Tuesday April 11, 2023 at 79 years of age. Dave was hired on December 16, 1963 and retired on March 1, 1994 after 30 years of service.

The service previously scheduled for Mike Severance will now be joint to celebrate both Mike and Dave. It will be held on April 23, 2023 from 1 – 4 pm at the Nile Country Club Ballroom in Mountlake Terrace, WA.

Kenneth Baker #2325, Retired Seattle Police Officer, passed away Monday April 3rd, 2023 at 83 years of age. Ken was hired on March 4, 1963 and retired on December 6, 1972 after 9 years of service. A private service will be held later this summer.
Rodney Jackson #1196, Retired Seattle Police Lieutenant Bomb Squad, passed away Wednesday March 8th, 2023 at 95 years of age. Rodney was hired on February 26, 1951 and retired on August 27, 1983 after 32 years of service.
William Fenkner #2482, retired Seattle police patrol sergeant, passed away Saturday, March 4th at eighty-nine years of age. Bill was hired on May 10, 1965 and retired after twenty-eight years of service on September 22, 1993.
Thomas Bacon #5144, retired Seattle police patrol officer, passed away on Sunday, February 19th at sixty-seven years of age. Tom was hired on March 25, 1987 and retired after thirty-three years of service on December 1, 2021.
Dan Cameron #2192, retired Seattle police harbor/patrol sergeant passed away on Saturday, February 11th at eighty-nine years of age. Dan was hired on October 2, 1961 and retired after twenty-seven years of service on December 30, 1988.
Richard Hume #2223, retired detective sergeant, passed away on Friday, February 10, 2023 at ninety years of age. Dick was hired on February 25, 1962 and retired after thirty-seven years of service on March 12, 1999.

Gary Fowler #2920, Retired Seattle Police Detective, passed away on January 5, 2023, at 82 years of age. 

Gary was born in Centralia but grew up in Seattle. After graduating from Highline High School, Gary enlisted in the Navy and became a Seabee. He was stationed at Lake Mead Naval Base, Las Vegas. This is where he met and married his wife, Virginia. Gary was later attached to the MP Shore Patrol in Port Hueneme, California, and served five years in the Navy and then returned to Seattle. He worked as an Electrician and later for Bethlehem Steel. 

A neighbor, who was a trooper, encouraged Gary to apply. Gary had enjoyed his time on shore patrol and thought, why not!?  SPD hired Gary on May 21, 1968. He entered Academy Class #56 along with John Mason #2884, Mark Amundson #2895, John Reynolds #2889, Frances Trudeau #2897, and Ken Baggen #2523. 

Gary was promoted to Detective on January 12, 1972, and was assigned to Burglary. Shortly after, he was assigned to Robbery and later transferred to Checks & Forgery. During this time, he also attended Puget Sound University and earned his BA Degree in Public Administration. 

Gary was a proud SPD Marching Drill Team member, performing alongside Dan Melton #2711, John Gray #2629, Gary Greenbaum #2668 and Dan Engle #2777. This group performed in many long-standing parades in Vancouver, San Francisco, Victoria, and Seafair. 

Gary was assigned to Homicide and was partnered with Dan Melton. During the 1983 Wah Mee Massacre. Sgt. Don Cameron #2058 told Gary and Dan to head up to HMC to talk to the lone survivor, who was getting prepped for surgery. Once they arrived, they threw scrubs on and entered the OR. The survivor was very challenging to understand and kept repeating the same word. Gayle Richardson #2344 and Wayne Plumb #2674 were in the office working, and one of their assigned cases was a recent double homicide involving two women; the suspects were Willie Mak and Benjamin Ng. When Dan & Gary returned to the Homicide Unit, the four detectives discussed the case and listened to the tape recording; the word was a name.  By 0730, Dan and Gary were at Willie Mak's parents' house. Willie happened to call, and his parents handed the phone to Dan Melton, who told him to "just come home," "Just get over here, your parents are upset and need you to come home," and hung up. A short time later, Willie arrived and was booked.

Benjamin Ng was arrested via location information plied by Bernie Lau #3354, but Tony Ng proved more elusive; After 500+ days, Gary and FBI agents extradited Tony from Calgary, Alberta. 

In another interesting case which was assigned to Dan Engle #2777, Gary and Dan were sent to find the gun used by a female assassin who had shot the intended victim, and threw the gun in a nearby dumpster. Gary and Dan went to the collection center, determined where to search, and dove in; They had found the gun in less than five minutes. The suspect was arrested as she was boarding a plane at SeaTac. Ann Rule referred to them as the "Garbage Can Detectives" in one of her novels.

Gary had been heavily involved in the Chinatown area after the Wah Mee Massacre. He was trusted by many in the community. During this time, there had been a large influx of gang activity. The "Asian Gang Task Force" was created, and Gary was the Detective assigned to the unit. This small unit later evolved into the Gang Unit as the Bloods and Crips came to Seattle. 

Gary's last ten years were spent in the Organized Criminal Intelligence Unit, working alongside Jack Kriney #2990 and Lt. Bob Holter #1993. Before he retired on June 2, 1993, Gary said he had the good fortune to have worked with good people like Dan Melton, John Gray, Joe Sanford, Bill Moffatt, Joe Lam, and Charlie McClure. 

Retirement brought many adventures for Gary and his wife. They loved to travel and spent many winters in Kauai, Hawaii. In addition, they enjoyed travels to Alaska, the Mediterranean, the Mexican Riviera, China, and the Panama Canal. Another favorite pastime was attending live theater on their annual trip to Ashland, Oregon, for the Shakespeare Festival or a local community theater.

Gary was a friendly, outgoing person who never really knew strangers; they were just friends he hadn't met yet. 

Gary is survived by his wife of 62 years, Virginia; his daughter Kim and son Kyle, three grandchildren; and many more who were either born into the family or acquired family. 

Dennis Hossfeld #4401, Retired Seattle Police Officer, passed away on January 10, 2023, at 77 years of age.

Dennis was born in Enid, Oklahoma. His family moved around often as his father was in the Air Force. His freshman through Junior years were spent at Ernest Harmon Air Force Base in Newfoundland. Dennis graduated from high school in Chippakee Falls, Massachusetts.

Dennis’ family had built a home in Arizona when Dennis was a toddler. This is where he returned to attend Northern Arizona State University and joined Sigma Nu Fraternity. Dennis’ Dad told him to “pick a major, or I’m pulling your tuition money.” Dennis’ roommate was a criminal justice major, so Dennis chose it as his Major. Dennis met his future wife, Tath, at school via a mutual friend. Dennis graduated with a BS in Criminal Justice.

Dennis was hired at Costa Mesa Police Department in June 1968. He served in many capacities,
including Canine, Civil disorder, Fraud, Vice, and auto theft. Dennis vacationed in Seattle many times and decided to move. Dennis was hired by SPD on April 16, 1980. His first assignment was working at South Precinct, Georgetown, with Bruce Wind #3995 as his first partner.

From about 1982 to 1992, Dennis was a member of the Board of Directors from 1982 until 1992.

From 1985 until 1987, Dennis was assigned to the Academy as a TAC officer under Captain Mike Germann #2714. He then transferred to Auto Theft. In 1988, Dennis was awarded the “3M Vehicle Theft Investigators Award”. He had discovered a chop shop netting 27 vehicles totaling $400,000, and the twelve suspects were convicted of 27 felony charges. 

In 1993, Auto Theft was rampant in Seattle. Captain Dan Oliver #3127 was in Major Crimes and was tasked with reducing this problem. Dan assigned Dennis, and along with other detectives, extensively reducing auto theft rates throughout the greater region.

Dennis then returned to Auto Theft, but in 1998, the problem crept up again. Dennis and others broke up another international auto theft ring, recovering 50 cars and netting 20 felony convictions. Dennis received the National Auto Theft Investigator of the Year Achievement Award.  

The Auto Theft Squad would get together for what Dennis called “Walk About Friday.” Dennis along with Gary Lindell #2464, Jon Olson #3484, Hiro Yamashita #4549, Paul Suguro #4452, and Sgt Gordy Vanrooy #3065 would walk and talk and have a meal together.

Dennis was a proud member of the SPD Bowling Team along with Jules Werner #3276, Jerry Fernandez #3808, Dick Rovig #1920, Nick Bulpin #2185, and Chris Wrede #4294.

Dennis finished his career in the Auto Theft Unit on January 31, 2012, after 31 years of service.

Dennis loved to travel anywhere his son was stationed in his retirement years, resulting in
many Hawaiian vacations. He enjoyed snow skiing, water rafting, canoeing in the Colorado River, and camping. Dennis wanted to help find a solution for the dropout rate of Camp Fire girls, to encourage the girls to stay on, Dennis became what some would call a “den mother” and alongside all the Camp Fire girls, Dennis took English Riding lessons!

Dennis held the RAP President title from 2014 to 2015 and always enjoyed seeing fellow retirees.

In 2001, Tath registered Dennis up for his first 3-Day Breast Cancer Walk. Little did Dennis know it was a 60-mile walk. He was hooked from the start and continued his participation for eight more years!  Dennis sustained an ankle injury on one of the walks but still wanted to support the cause, so he rode bike support for a while. He then progressed to crew member status for the next five years; You could spot Dennis wearing a pink bra and tutu, supporting everyone alongside around him.

Dennis is predeceased by his brother Tom, whom he had a lifelong competition with, so much so that when Dennis passed, his son Chris remarked that he could hear Uncle Tom say to Dad, “But I got here first!”.  

Dennis is survived by his wife of 54 years, Tath, their son Chris, two granddaughters, and many.
loved ones.

Dick Rovig #1920, retired Seattle Police Detective, passed away on January 1, 2023, at 88 years of age. 

Dick was born and raised in Seattle and graduated from Lincoln High School. He went to work with Boeing and eventually started working alongside his dad on a troopship transporting GIs to Korea via Yokohama and Okinawa. Dick saw the writing on the wall and knew he would be drafted, so Dick volunteered for a two-year stint in the Army. He completed basic training at Fort Carson, Colorado, and advanced in armor training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Dick could drive a Patton Tank before he could drive a car legally!  

Once Dick was honorably discharged in 1957, he started working as a trainee in the ocean marine insurance business. He married and returned to work at Boeing, where he began contributing to the employee newsletter. The big buzz around was the World’s Fair was coming, and Seattle Police were hiring, so Dick took the test.  

Dick entered class #40 alongside Jim Johnson #1979, Carolyn Byron #1853, Jim Philbrick #1932, Kay Kemmis #1886, Frank McGlothlin #1929, and Dean Olsen #1893. He carpooled to classes with Charlie Lindblom #1890, Nat Crawford #1931, and Vic Heins #1882. 
Dick’s first assignment was to Patrol downtown, first watch relief. He eventually transferred to Wallingford Station. The department drove ’57 Chevys or ’58 Fords. Most were refurbished from the Engineering Department fleet. 

Dick was ready for more challenges, so he transferred to Special Enforcement. This squad was recognized by Chief Frank Ramon #641 for multiple on-view felony arrests. Dick asked to move to three-wheelers and later to Accident Investigations, called the Traffic Special Detail.

Dick had always worked part-time in the family grocery business in Magnolia and was persuaded to resign and go full-time into the grocery business. With the help of Captain Carl Reinbolt #401 and Lt. Lyle LaPointe, Dick returned to police work 11 months after his resignation.

In 1967, Dick was appointed to the SPOG Board of Directors vacant position by Wayne Larkin #1352. Needing a way to communicate with members involving local and state law enforcement, Dick reflected on his love of journalism in High School and at Boeing. So, on November 12, 1971, Dick started “The Guardian.”  

In the early ’70s, Dick went to community Relations under Captain Bill Rhodes #1142, becoming known as the “Voice of the Seattle Police Department.” The unit had purchased a “Code a-phone,” a telephone answering device. It was Dick’s job to record police news, traffic conditions, and miscellaneous information for public dissemination. News stations would call and play the recordings over the air. Dick signed off each recording with “This is Dick Rovig, Public Information, Seattle Police.” 

Dick worked in Criminal Investigations Admin Unit, handling research for then Bureau Chief (Chief) Bob Hanson #899, and eventually went back to Patrol, working 2N2 under Sgt. Craig VandePutte #2246 and took the Detective test.  

On June 6, 1973, Dick married Patsy. He kept busy on his days off with volunteering for various activities, including serving as Treasurer for SPAA, co-chair of a few Police Balls, being President of the Golf Association, and putting on GRAM events, to name just a few projects. 

Around 1975, Dick was assigned as a Detective to the Juvenile Unit with Sgt Bob Davis #1758. In 1982, Dick ran for Guild President and served in that role from 1982 to 1984. Dick remained Editor of The Guardian until his retirement on November 15, 1989, and continued as Editor Emeritus until approximately 2009. 

Shortly after his retirement, Dick was appointed to the RSPOA Board. He was named Editor of the Washington Policeman/Police Officer, the Washington State Council of Police officers, now WACOPS Quarterly magazine. 

In 2022, Dick moved into an Assisted Living Facility; not one to sit around, Dick created a newsletter and published a daily crossword puzzle for all residents. 

Dick worked tirelessly and volunteered thousands of hours to improve benefits, pay, and working conditions that still exist today because of his leadership. This does not include the countless hours volunteering to create or edit newspapers and chairing and managing events, golfing trips, and fun family events for all.

Dick is survived by his wife of 49 years, Patsy, their five children, Kelly, Lynn, Ted, Mark, and Joon, and five grandchildren. 

John Mason #2884, Retired Seattle Police Assistant Chief passed away on January 1, 2023, at 79 years of age. 
John was born in Shuqualak, Mississippi. His family moved to Omaha, Nebraska, and he graduated from Central High School. John was drafted into the US Army and served at Fort Lewis for approximately two years. When his military time was close to the end, he applied to Seattle PD. The military had a six-month early release provision, so he was discharged from the army then hired on April 23, 1968.

John was in Academy #56 along with, John Nordlund #2909, Gary Lindell #2464, Al Lima #2898, Wes Ferris #2908, Alex Thole #2521, Ken Baggen #2523, and Jerry Smith #2876, to name a few.

After the academy, John briefly went to Patrol in the Central Precinct working with new hire Dan Oliver #3127. Then he worked in Traffic Enforcement and Motorcycles for the next three years.

One night in April 1972, John went dancing at a club in Everett. This is where he met his future wife, Shirley. They married seven months later.

In 1973, John went to 1st Watch South; his squad included lifelong friends Dale Drain #2967 and Les Yeager #2436. They patrolled the Rainier Valley area.

Even after retirement, this South precinct group and many others that started long ago still get together for coffee once a week. 
On October 5, 1977, John was promoted to Sergeant. He obtained a degree from the University of Puget Sound through the LEAP program. John’s family was growing, and they enjoyed camping. There were many camping trips between other friends including with the family of Ron Sylve #3537.

In October 1980, John was promoted to Lieutenant and worked alongside Major Joe Tolliver #1901 in the Community Service Officer program.

John was promoted to Captain on March 31, 1992 and assigned to the Gang Unit where he had Lt. Emett Kelsie #2794 by his side. Lt. Kelsie was talking with John in his office when the phone rang, and it was an Assistant Chief. As the conversation progressed, so did the volume. When John loudly told the A/Chief, “You can do whatever you want, just transfer me out,” Emett pulled the handset out of John’s hands and said, “Hi, hi, can I help you Chief?” As John’s obituary states, “John stood tall” and always had his unit and personnel’s best interest at heart. John’s next assignment was Vice prior to returning to the South Precinct as the Precinct Captain on April 6, 1994.

John earned the nickname “Cheap John” in his early years. A title he wore like a badge of honor! John was talented at finding deals and doing intensive research to get the best deal. It is widely known that Dan Oliver #3127 and John would go to lunch, when the bill arrived, the standoff started, as did many laughs.

In mid-1997, John was promoted to Assistant Chief and one of his units was Training, with Les Yeager #2436 again by his side. A year or so later, when the official word came that the Public Safety Building would be replaced by a new Justice Center, the department assigned A/Chief Mason to function as the liaison for the planning, architecture, construction, and opening. Groundbreaking took place just after John retired on April 14, 1999, with 31 years of service. 

After settling on travel as his next vocation, John researched, found deals, and set sail on cruises. John and Shirley traveled extensively with Dale #2967 and Tina #4186 Drain, as well as Les #2436 and Gail Yeager. They visited throughout the Caribbean, sailed trans-Atlantic a couple of times, and saw the likes of Dubai, Israel, Europe, and Africa, including a safari in Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana. John’s last cruise was a few weeks prior to his passing.

John is survived by his wife of 50 years, Shirley; his daughter Jennifer; son Kim and many loved ones, both family and friends.