The recent passing of a former Logansport chief of police and Cass County sheriff leaves friends and past colleagues with memories of his leadership, accountability, compassion and a personality that made him easy to work with.
Robert J. “Bob” Rozzi passed away Tuesday at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Indianapolis following a brief illness, his obituary states. He was 74.
Rozzi was a Logansport police officer from 1966 to 1998 and served eight years as chief of police.
Logansport Police Chief Mike Clark said Rozzi was a family friend he knew all his life. He recalled Rozzi hiring him as an officer 24 years ago.
“Bob was a good guy,” Clark said.
“He was a good leader, a good friend. He was always very involved and took care of his officers.”
Clark said after he became chief of police last year, he would visit with Rozzi periodically to receive advice.
“He just made it a point to be there as a mentor or an adviser,” Clark said. “He was always a person you could count on if you needed something.”
Rozzi continued his law enforcement career as a president of the Indiana Sheriffs’ Association and a president and board member of the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy.
He was elected Cass County sheriff in 1999.
Cass County Sheriff Randy Pryor said he was a trooper with the Indiana State Police when he met Rozzi, who was at that time a patrolman with the Logansport Police Department, in the mid 1970s.
“I got to work with him a little bit on different things,” Pryor said.
They continued to work together on various investigations as their careers continued, Pryor went on to say.
“He was a good guy,” Pryor said. “Easy to work with and got along with everybody. He was always pleasant to people around him and citizens he came in contact with.”
Rozzi was a member of All Saints Catholic Church and in 1974 was named Logansport’s Catholic Layman of the Year.
Father Mike McKinney, who has been with the All Saints Catholic Church for the last 11 years, called Rozzi “a very faithful member.”
McKinney said while Rozzi had the sternness required for a job in law enforcement, he got to see a different part of him at church.
“There was definitely a compassionate side about him too, for sure,” McKinney said.
As a veteran of the U.S. Army, Rozzi was a member of VFW Post 3790 in Logansport. The post named him Policeman of the Year in 1993.
Mike Sims, commander of the post, said he met Rozzi in the late 1970s when Rozzi’s first wife started working as a beautician at the same business his wife worked for.
“He was a real nice guy,” Sims said. “He got along with everybody.”
A Mass of Christian Burial for Rozzi will be at 11 a.m. Monday at All Saints Catholic Church. Burial with full military honors will be in Mount Calvary Cemetery. Visitation will be from 2 to 8 p.m. today at Kroeger Funeral Home. The Logansport Elks Lodge, of which Rozzi was also a member, will hold a memorial service at 7 p.m. at the funeral home.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or email@example.com.