SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) — Family and friends gathered Monday to honor law enforcement legend Vincent Vespia Jr. after his passing.

The retired police chief of South Kingstown died unexpectedly Jan. 24 at the age of 84. A mass was held at Christ the King Church in Kingston on Monday morning.

Vespia joined the Rhode Island State Police in 1959. Alongside Providence police lieutenant Richard Tamburini, Vespia was known for investigating New England mob boss Raymond L.S. Patriarca.

Vespia then served as South Kingstown’s police chief from 1981 through his retirement in 2016. He was also the first-ever inductee into the Rhode Island Criminal Justice Hall of Fame.