Former Roxbury Police Lieutenant Succumbs to Bicycle Crash Injuries

2db6288b52fd8088322e_b8943a2fb9ca2f58db37_photo_of_joe.jpg
Joseph Franklin at the start of the Police Unity Tour on Monday Credits: James Simonetti
d767e2569788700f91f9_169a2d7ab4eb805c42d8_lt.jpg
Retired Roxbury Police Lt. Joseph Franklin Credits: Roxbury Police Department
2db6288b52fd8088322e_b8943a2fb9ca2f58db37_photo_of_joe.jpg

ROXBURY, NJ - Former Roxbury Police Lt. Joseph Franklin died today from injuries he suffered Monday in a bicycle accident during a police charity event, it was announced this evening.

Franklin's passing was confirmed by the Roxbury Police Department and in a statement from his family. "It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Joseph Franklin," said the family. "Helping others, even in death, he donated his organs to those in need."

The family requested privacy "during this extremely difficult time" and thanked the community for the support it has shown.

Sign Up for E-News

"I saw Joe Monday at the starting line to the (Police) Unity Tour and spoke with him for about 30 minutes," said Roxbury Police Chief Marc Palanchi in a statement. "Joe was enthusiastic about how much he was enjoying retirement and how great everything was going in North Carolina. He told me he had become an avid bike rider and said he started every day with a 25-35 mile ride, and then he would play golf or head to the beach."

Palanchi said his former colleague "was excited about and looking forward to the Unity Tour to ride in honor of the fallen and see all of his friends" who were also participating in the event.

"We shook hands, wished each other well and he told me to tell all of the guys to be safe as he rode away," said Palanchi. "A short time later he was involved in the accident."

Franklin retired in 2007 after serving 25 years with the Roxbury Police Department. He was hired in 1982 as a patrolman, said Palanchi.

"During his long and successful career Joe served the agency in many different ranks and capacities, but his greatest contribution to our Department and the community was his initiation of Explorer Post 2188 in 1991."

The chief said more than 500 young men and women participated in the program under Franklin's supervision. "He gave his time, energy and provided leadership and guidance to young people effortlessly," said Palanchi. "Following the example set forth by Joe, many of those explorers went on to become police officers, while others simply went on to become productive members of society."

The chief noted that Explorer Post 2188 and Franklin were awarded repeatedly over the years at both the local and national level. He also said Franklin helped many other Morris County law enforcement agencies create Explorer posts. "Joe Franklin was practicing community policing long before anybody was even calling it that," said Palanchi.

During his tenure with the Roxbury department, Franklin served as a patrolman, a traffic officer, a patrol sergeant, a traffic sergeant, a patrol lieutenant, a traffic lieutenant and a community services lieutenant, said the chief. 

"He was a 1997 graduate of the prestigious West Point Command and Leadership program," he added. "Joe was awarded the 1993 William H. Spurgeon Leadership Award by the Boy Scouts of America." Franklin also created "the one week Police Explorer Academy, which gave kids an opportunity to experience what it was like to attend a Police Academy," said Palanchi.

He called the donation of Franklin's organs "one final heroic act" by the beloved lieutenant. "If I could use one word to sum Joe up best it would be honorable," said Palanchi. "God Bless you Joe, you were part of the Roxbury Police Department family and we along with many others will miss you."

Franklin was involved in a serious bicycle crash early in Monday's annual Police Unity Tour. Details about the accident have not been released by investigators.

Funeral arrangements will be published when they are determined.

Others who knew and worked with Franklin in Roxbury, including former Roxbury Police Chief James Simonetti and Roxbury Mayor Jim Rilee, agreed with Palanchi's assessment: He was an extremely dedicated and selfless law enforcement officer.

Simonetti described him as "a consummate professional."

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Cranford

Cranford H.S. Athletes of the Week: Anna Horne & Phil Marotta

April 17, 2018

CRANFORD, NJ - Due to impressive performances as goalies for varsity lacrosse, Anna Horne and Phil Marotta are Cranford High School's Athletes of the Week.

Horne, a junior, has 408 career saves. Her current total for the season is 84 saves as she helped lead the Cougars to victory in games against Montville and Governor Livingston.

"I like the team dynamic of lacrosse," ...

Northside Kitchen Wins ‘Best Bite’ at Westfield’s Sandwichfest

April 22, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — Northside Kitchen’s fried chicken sandwich beat sandwiches from nine other local restaurants to win “Best Bite” by popular vote at Sandwichfest Sunday. Northside Kitchen is located at 760 Prospect St. in Westfield.

More than 400 ticket holders each had a chance to taste 10 sandwiches and vote for their favorite, according to Rory Chadwick, one of ...

Once Upon A Mattress coming to CDC Theatre in May

April 24, 2018

If you think you know the classic fairy tale The Princess and the Pea, the musical comedy Once Upon A Mattress coming to CDC Theatre in Cranford may surprise you! With music composed by Broadway royalty, Mary Rodgers, this tuneful story of royal courtship, curses and comeuppance is a colorful delight for the entire family from beginning to end!
The show opens May 4 and runs weekends through ...

Cranford Police Blotter: Marijuana-Related Arrests

April 24, 2018

The information provided does not represent the total scope of police activity. Individuals charged as a result of police investigations are merely an accusation. All defendants should be presumed innocent until proven guilty. 

 

1. 04/19/2018 6:13 p.m.

Raritan Road and Coleman Avenue 

Arrested: Rahman Daley, 22, Brooklyn NY 

Arrested by: Ptl. Daniel ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, April 25, 7:00 PM

The Cranford Hotel (sponsored by Calvary Lutheran Church), Cranford

Beer & Bible

Religions And Spirituality

'The Sting' shimmers and shakes at Paper Mill

‘The Sting ‘slithers and shakes at Paper Mill Playhouse

By LIZ KEILL

MILLBURN, NJ – In a premiere production of “The Sting,” Harry Connick Jr. commands the Paper Mill Playhouse stage in Millburn.

Based on the sensational Paul Newman/Robert Redford film in 1973, the 1930s plot centers on a con game and gambling, sometimes on a train between New York and ...

Politics IS Government in Union County

April 22, 2018

After Bruce Patrson of Garwood was stopped from speaking at the Union County freeholder meeting of March 22 regarding the politics behind refusing to give the party line to a sitting freeholder I thought this brazen suppression of free speech could not go unanswered. A the the April 19 meeting I answered with these comments.

After ten years of following government in Union County I conclude ...