Retired Warwick commander who suddenly passed away remembered for heroism

West Bay

Courtesy: Warwick Police Department

WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — The Warwick Police Department is mourning the loss of a longtime commander.

In a social media post, the department announced that Commander Michael Babula passed away over the weekend.

Babula, 66, had been with the department for 36 years before retiring in 2018. Throughout his tenure, he served in numerous roles including detective, sergeant, lieutenant and captain before being promoted to commander.

Back when he was a sergeant, the department said Babula risked his life to save someone else’s.

In 1993, Babula dragged a motorcycle crash victim away to safety just seconds before the bike’s gas tank exploded, according to the department.

His heroism would later make him the recipient of the Medal of Bravery.

The department said Babula also received a number of other commendations and attended many schools throughout his tenure, though there are “too many to list.”

“He was a friend and mentor to many of us here at the police department and will be greatly missed,” the department said.

Warwick Mayor Frank Picozzi also expressed his condolences on social media Monday, calling Babula’s passing “a devastating loss.”

“Commander Babula served this city with passion, courage, dedication, and honor,” Picozzi wrote.

Picozzi ordered flags across the city to fly at half staff Monday in Babula’s honor.

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