Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 22 years, 8 months, 17 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 26th District - Desplaines
District of Incident (Present Day): Broadview, IL
Cause of Death: Struck - By Vehicle
Age at Time of Death: 49
Date of Birth: 07 Jan 1888
Date of Appointment: 14 May 1914
Date of Incident: Broadview, IL
End of Watch: 31 Jan 1937
Date of Interment: 03 Feb 1937
Cemetery: All Saints Catholic Cemetery - Des Plaines, Illinois
Grave Location: Grave 8, Lot S 1/2 22, Block 4, Section 1
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # D-1
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 22
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Not Listed
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 3-W: 28
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Sergeant Sidney Thomas Sullivan, Sr., Star #1258, aged 49 years, was a 22 year, 8 month, 17 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 26th District – Desplaines.
On January 31, 1937, Sergeant Sullivan was en route to interview an informant at the Desplaines Street Station regarding a string of recent taxicab robberies. The informant was to give the sergeant a name of a group of bandits responsible for the robberies. Sergeant Sullivan’s automobile skidded on a patch of ice and crashed into a ditch. He walked approximately two miles searching for help when he was accidentally struck by a passing vehicle driving on Roosevelt Road near Hillside, which also skidded on the ice. He was pronounced dead on January 31, 1937.
The driver of the car was held to an inquest by the Coroner. The driver testified that fog had obscured his vision and that when he applied the brakes to avoid hitting Sergeant Sullivan his car had skidded and then struck the sergeant. A Coroner’s Jury returned a verdict of accidental death.
Sergeant Sullivan was waked at a funeral home located at 5350 West North Avenue. His funeral mass was held at St. Peter Canisius Church located at 5057 West North Avenue. He was laid to rest on February 3, 1937 in All Saints Catholic Cemetery, 700 North River Road, Des Plaines, Illinois. His grave is located in Grave 8, Lot S 1/2 22, Block 4, Section 1.
Sergeant Sidney Thomas Sullivan, Sr., born January 7 1888, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on May 14, 1914 and was issued Star #1526. On December 24, 1927, he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and issued Star #141. On February 6, 1937, he was issued Sergeant Star #1258. He earned 6 Credible Mentions and 2 Extra Compensations for Meritorious Conduct totaling $240.00 during his career. Sergeant Sullivan was referred to as a “brilliant detective“ by his captains at the Desplaines Street Station. Prior to joining the Chicago Police Department he was a Fireman for the City of Chicago.
Sergeant Sullivan was survived by his wife, Virginia Josephine (nee Kelley), age 42; children: Sidney Thomas, Jr., age 18 and Virginia Mary, age 6 and siblings: Isabell Nies, John L., Mrs. Craig Benson, Mrs. F. G. Orsinger. His brother, Lieutenant John L. Sullivan, was Chief of Detectives with the Chicago Police Department. Sergeant Sullivan’s son, grandson: John L. Sullivan, brother, and two nephews also served distinguished careers with the Chicago Police Department for almost a century.
On November 14, 2006, Sergeant Sullivan’s star was retired by Superintendent Philip J. Cline and enshrined in the Superintendent’s Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 3510 South Michigan Avenue.