Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 4 years, 0 months, 15 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 5th District - Wabash
District of Incident (Present Day): 002 - Wentworth
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 31
Date of Birth: 01 Jan 1901
Date of Appointment: 19 Mar 1928
Date of Incident: 002 - Wentworth
End of Watch: 03 Apr 1932
Date of Interment: 06 Apr 1932
Cemetery: Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery - Chicago, Illinois
Grave Location: Unknown
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # C-3
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 7
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 2, Line 32
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 40-E: 5
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman Raymond Cornelius Kelly, Sr., Star #5396, aged 31 years, was a 4 year, 0 month, 15 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 5th District – Wabash.
On April 3, 1932, at 3:25 p.m., Officer Kelly with his partner, Patrolman Robert Fawcett, responded to a disturbance at 5742 South State Street. Edward Wash, who had been drinking all day, had gone into a homicidal rage. He had shot a boarder of his, Margento Fernandez, in the left arm. Fernandez was able to escaped the second floor apartment and call for police. He informed the police of what had occurred and that they would be looking for Wash. As Officer’s Kelly and Fawcett arrived they met with a crowd of people who had gathered in front to observe the commotion. The officers learned of Wash’s approximate location from the crowd and relocated to the fourth floor and each began knocking on different doors in an attempt to locate Wash. Wash opened a door that Officer Kelly had knocked on and instantly fired his weapon at Kelly. Officer Kelly returned fire, forcing Wash to retreat into the apartment. Wash continued to fire through the closed apartment door as Fawcett raced to pull Kelly from the line of fire while at the same time returning fire.
Officer Fawcett carried Kelly downstairs and as they pushed through the crowd, which had grown in size to several hundred people, reinforcements began to arrive. Fawcett loaded Kelly into his squad car and rushed him to Washington Hospital with Detectives Martin McGuire and McKeown. Officer Kelly suffered serious wounds and died while en route to the hospital. The other responding officers gathered outside the apartment building and attempted to devise the safest way to subdue Wash. By this time more than 50 officers had responded. Wash not deterred by the number of police, continued to fire at officers. Police shot tear gas canisters into his apartment in an attempt to stop him from shooting. After Officer Kelly’s death was confirmed, Detective McGuire returned to the scene and shot and killed Wash.
Officer Kelly was laid to rest on April 6, 1932 in Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery, 2755 West 111th Street, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman Raymond Cornelius Kelly, Sr., born January 1, 1901, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on March 19, 1928.
Officer Kelly was survived by his wife, Mae Helen (nee Hilbrick), age 29; children: Raymond Cornelius, Jr., age 1 and Virginia May, age 5; mother, Catherine (nee Magner) and siblings: George (CPD), John (CPD), Lawrence, Jr. (CPD) and William (CPD). His father, Lawrence, Sr., was also a Chicago Police Officer.