During his 38-year career as a Saginaw Police Department officer, Edwin F Nowaczyk,, fondly known as “Officer Ed,”, was responsible for the school pedestrian and traffic safety programs. He was instrumental in developing the school safety patrol program. also served as an accident investigator, police community relations specialist and juvenile investigator.
In just about every elementary classroom in Saginaw, “Officer Ed” spoke to children about bicycle and traffic safety, provided a break from the daily classroom routine, and warned about the dangers of riding a bicycle on the wrong side of the street or walking out from between parked cars. If a child were ever injured in an accident, “Officer Ed” made sure to visit that child in the hospital or at their home.
Ed also served as an accident investigator, police community relations specialist and juvenile investigator with the Saginaw Police Department. “Officer Ed” received several letters of commendation and was the first recipient of the Saginaw Police Department’s “Lifetime Meritorious Service Award.” Upon “Officer Ed’s” passing in 1985, then Saginaw Police Chief Alex Perez said: “(Ed) probably did the most to enhance sound community relations between the police department and the community than any other person on the department. He was highly thought of not only by the schools but also by the community. Parents knew him when they were students and their children knew him.”
The Optimist Club of Saginaw, of which Ed was a long-time member, decided it would honor “Officer Ed” by creating a scholarship in his honor. Since 1987, the “Officer Ed” Nowaczyk scholarship has been awarded annually since 1987 to a Saginaw County high school senior pursuing a degree in criminal justice or law enforcement.
“He was a big man, with a round face that always wore a smile. If that smile faded and was replaced with a frown, someone knew he’d better shape up quick, His hands were enormous; they patted heads, restrained a rowdy boy, soothed a crying child, and, with a tender touch, wiped away tears caused by a scraped knee. He had a huge handkerchief just for that purpose. I wonder if he knew how he brightened the lives of kids” wrote Dora Musico in the Saginaw News upon his passing in 1985.
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