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JULY 30, 1920 -- APRIL 2, 2005

Richard J. Helmich of West Seneca, a retired Buffalo police officer and World War II veteran who participated in D-Day, died unexpectedly Saturday at home. He was 84.

The Buffalo native attended East High School.

Mr. Helmich, an Army private first class, was part of the fourth wave of soldiers who landed on the Normandy coast of France on D-Day, June 6, 1944.

He saw combat in the Ardennes, northern France and central Europe, earning five battle stars.

Mr. Helmich was a patrolman from 1957 to 1983.

He was a member of Lodge 351, Free & Accepted Masons, Springville; Ismailia Shrine Temple, Orchard Park; and Harvey D. Morin Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2940, West Seneca.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing and traveling.

His wife, Arline E. Domros Helmich, died in 1985.

Survivors include a son, Richard F. of Delevan, four grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Services were today in Sieck & Mast Funeral Home, West Seneca. Burial was in Ridgelawn Cemetery, Cheektowaga.