Veteran Mass. LEO dies of heart attack while working road closure

Det. Michael Dion was the Chicopee Police Department's longest serving officer

Duty Death: Michael Dion - [Chicopee, Massachusetts]

End of Service: 11/10/2021

By Jeanette DeForge

CHICOPEE, Mass. — Flags will be flown at half-staff on Friday to honor the city’s longest-serving police officer, who died Wednesday after suffering a heart attack while on duty.

Detective Michael J. Dion had been a police officer for 39 years and had been wearing Badge 1, assigned to the senior patrolman in the department, since Dec. 30, deputy chief Jeff Gawron said in a written statement.

“With esteemed honor the men and women of the Chicopee Police Department have bestowed the 2021 Chief’s Commendation Award and the 2021 Officer of the Year Award to Senior Patrolman Detective Michael Dion,” Gawron said. “Mike will be greatly missed by the men and women of the Chicopee Police Department.”

At the request of Mayor John L. Vieau, Gov. Charlie Baker has ordered the U.S., state and city flags to be lowered to half-staff across Chicopee starting at sunrise in memory of Dion.

Dion was working at a road closure Monday when he suffered a heart attack. He was rushed to Baystate Medical Center, in Springfield, and was put on life support until his death. His organs will be donated to those who need them, Gawron said.

Dion leaves his daughter, his parents, his girlfriend, two sisters and other relatives and friends. His fellow officers are mourning his death, Gawron said.

Dion began his law enforcement career serving as a police explorer and then a police cadet until Oct. 4, 1983, when he was appointed as a police officer by the late Judge Robert Kumor, who was mayor at the time. Dion first worked in the uniform division and was assigned to the investigations bureau in 1998, Gawron said.

“Throughout the course of his career Detective Dion investigated numerous homicide cases, human trafficking cases and was directly involved in high profile felony arrests. Detective Dion also assisted numerous city agencies with code enforcement,” Gawron said.

Memorial services for Dion have not been finalized yet.

Donations to the Dion family may be dropped off at the Chicopee Police Department or any Polish National Credit Union. Any in-kind donations can be organized through

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McClatchy-Tribune News Service


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