Heroes Roll Call: Detective Robert J. Clark, #545

The Cleveland Police Museum is honored to tell the stories of our fallen officers on the anniversary of their End of Watch.

On January 6, 1992, Detective Robert J. Clark began his career with the Cleveland Police Department. He was inspired by the service of his grandfather, a police officer in Pennsylvania who was shot and killed in 1914. Throughout his six years on the department, Detective Clark received numerous citations for acts of bravery and distinguished service, including two Distinguished Service Medals, a Chief’s Commendation and a Citizen’s Award plaque.

On July 1, 1998, while assigned to the First District Vice Unit and in company with Vice Detectives Keith Haven and Ray Diaz, Detective Clark observed a drug transaction and pursued a suspect into a stairway at 10010 Madison Avenue. While effecting the arrest, a struggle ensued, and Detectives Clark and Diaz were pushed down a flight of stairs. The suspect fired at the detectives as they fell defenseless down the stairs. Detective Clark was struck four times sustaining wounds ultimately proving fatal. Detective Haven returned fire, killing the suspect.

Detective Robert J. Clark, #545, EOW July 1, 1998

“He was a warrior,” said Cmdr. Charles McNeeley of the First District. “He’s the kind of fellow that wanted to come out every night and knock these knuckleheads off the corner and then go home to his three children. [He was a] gentleman that tried to take care of people who can’t take care of themselves.”

Detective Robert Clark was survived by his wife Cathy and three children, Melissa age 8, Alaina age 6, and Robbie Jr. age 3.  Services were held at Our Lady of Angels Church on Rocky River Drive in Cleveland and he was laid to rest in Sunset Memorial Park in Olmsted Township.

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