Retired Seattle Police Officers Association

Last Ring

Take a moment to remember our friends and associates who have passed.

Mike Bolger #2966, retired Seattle police officer, passed away on Wednesday, September 15th at 85 years of age.  Mike was hired on November 12, 1968 and retired for disability on May 8, 1977. 

Mike was born in 1935.  He was raised in Sydney, Australia during and right after World War II.  He attended Scotts College, our high school equivalent.  There he played rugby and Australian rules football.  After graduation he went to England to attend university earning a degree in mechanical engineering.  Mike then returned to Australia to work on his electrical engineering degree.  About this time, his mother married an American banker and moved to Seattle.  When he was twenty-eight years old Mike traveled to Seattle to visit his mother and stepfather.  He liked it here so much that he got a job at Boeings.  In 1964 Mike joined the Seattle Police Reserves under the leadership of John Hoberg #1302.  Like so many of our officers who worked at Boeings, Mike was bored and tired of the layoffs.  In November 1968 Mike was hired on the department.  He attended academy class #58.

Mike's first assignment was Traffic.  After seven months he transferred to Patrol, assigned to the Wallingford Precinct.  On August 11, 1969, Mike was working riot duties on the "Ave" in the University District.  While helping Larry Stewart #2420 in the arrest of three rioters the crowd turned on them.  In the ensuing battle Mike suffered a fractured jaw and three badly broken teeth and a shoulder injury.   But they successfully booked the suspects.  Mike did not take any sick leave.  His teeth were replaced with a bridge and his jaw healed with minor surgery.  

Mike partnered up with Eric Norberg #2605 working for Charlie Lindblom #1890.  They were assigned an Umbrella car.  Mike and Eric were pro-active officers.  In February 1970 they stopped a stolen Mustang.  As the driver exited the vehicle, he fired a round at Eric.  Both Mike and Eric returned fire.  They managed to "kill" the car and after a pursuit both suspects were arrested, charged and convicted of first-degree assault.  During the incident, Mike reinjured his shoulder.  

Mike was known to call all suspects "Sir", even the ones who tried to kill him.  When asked about that he explained in Australia, Sir is spelled two ways: S-I-R and C-U-R.  In 1971 Mike partnered up with John Harmon #3042 working the Ballard car.  While arresting a car prowler, Mike injured his eye.  The eye injury sent Mike to the Patrol Administrative Unit where he worked for the next eighteen months.  He spent some of his time working as the Stable Master for the new mounted unit.  In late 1972 Mike was transferred back to the Wallingford Precinct.  In February 1973 while riding to work on his motorcycle a car ploughed into him.  Mike's right leg was severely injured along with back and shoulder injuries.  Due to all his injuries, in 1977 Mike was forced to retire after serving the city for almost nine years.

Mike then started working for the city's building department as an Inspector.  After inspecting buildings for five years, Mike landed a position as a flight engineer on the University of Washington's weather research plane.  While working at the "U", Mike earned a degree in Political Science.  Four years later Mike entered the private sector working as an Electrical Foreman for various electrical contractors.

In 1992, Mike and his wife Julia decided to sail to Australia via California on their 57-foot ketch.  When finally arriving in Australia they ran afoul of the import duty laws.  After a four-year legal battle, during which time Mike attended law school, the dispute was resolved by forfeiture of their boat, fines, and leaving Australia.

In 1996 Mike and Julia settled in Placitas, New Mexico.  Mike built their home and found employment at the Bernalitto Correctional Facility along with volunteering for the Placitas Fire Department.  In 2003 Julia finally convinced Mike to retire.  He then started re-modeling their home.  He had a need to keep active right up to the end.
Mike is survived by his wife Julia and his daughter Patricia Ann.