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Frederick R. Clark, retired Buffalo police officer; Feb. 4, 1924 -- Feb. 6, 2012

Frederick Ross Clark, of Williamsville, a retired Buffalo police motorcycle patrolman, died Feb. 6 in DeGraff Memorial Hospital, North Tonawanda. He was 88.

Born in Buffalo, he was a graduate of Seneca Vocational High School and served with the Navy in the Pacific in World War II. He also served in the Korean War. He received a commendation for helping flood victims after a hurricane when he was stationed in Kingsville, Texas.

Mr. Clark joined the Buffalo Police Department in 1951 and was one of the officers assigned to protect the mayor. He once disarmed a woman who threatened Mayor Frank A. Sedita.

Transferred to the Motorcycle Division, he was a motorcade escort for many visiting dignitaries and received a handwritten note of thanks from President Richard M. Nixon.

On patrol, he often was the first to arrive at emergency scenes and many times helped rescue people from burning buildings. He received numerous commendations.

During the 1970s, he frequently served as an acting lieutenant. He was chosen to serve on task forces with other police agencies and helped train new officers. Mayor James Griffin awarded him the key to the city for outstanding service when he retired in 1979. The department also retired his badge number -- 609.

In retirement, he worked for the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association and for private security firms. He also was a volunteer at Buffalo Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

"My dad spent his life, every single bit of it, doing something for someone," his son, Michael J., said.

He lived for several years in Boston and in Lyons, Central New York, returning to the Buffalo area in 2002.

His wife, Jean Elizabeth Flynn Clark, died in 1972.

In addition to his son, he is survived by a daughter, Kathleen Ann.

A memorial Mass will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Saturday in Our Lady of Charity Catholic Church, 65 Ridgewood Road.

[ANDERSON]