September 14 2020

Obituary: Beloved Family Man and Korean War Veteran Richard Joseph Hanafin, 88

A beloved family man, Korean War Veteran and longtime state police officer has passed. 

Richard Joseph Hanafin, a retired Metropolitan District Commission Police Officer, passed away after a long illness on Thursday morning, September 10, at the age of 88, his obituary from Sullivan Funeral Home says. 

Richard was born in Cambridge, the son of John and Marie Hanafin.  He grew up in Cambridge and was a graduate of Cambridge Rindge Technical High School.  

He enlisted in the Army at the age of 17 in August of 1949. On June 25, 1950, some 75,000 North Korean soldiers crossed the 38th Parallel to start the Korean War. Richard’s Army Regiment was quickly sent to Korea where they saw extensive combat in the first years of the war.  

He was injured during his almost 2 year tour in Korea He was the recipient of the Korean Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, which meant he participated in three of the thirteen major military campaigns during the War.  

“He was very proud of his service to his country and supported all service men and women through his membership in the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Disabled American Veterans organizations,” his obituary reads. “He regularly attended Memorial Day and Veterans Day ceremonies, and many other events recognizing his fellow Veterans.”

He ended his Army career with the rank of  Corporal. 

After the war,Richard was a patrolman in the Metropolitan District Commission, now the Massachusetts State Police, where he served for 25 years. He worked in the Boston, Revere, and Medford barracks during his tenure. 

“Richard was the type of officer who loved engaging with the community, had a sympathetic heart, and loved his role of serving and protecting the residents in the communities he served,” his obituary says. “His children saw his role and value to the community and when they grew up, one became a police officer and two chose to be firefighters all in Burlington. His retirement years were spent driving limousines at funerals and working as a funeral assistant at local funeral homes including the Sullivan Funeral Home.”

Read his full obituary here



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