LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Robert Borowski is someone you’ll want to meet

May 23, 2011

I never tired of hearing about his experiences from rookie to detective and special investigator. Once, Borowski showed me a photograph and a pair of handcuffs. In the photo, Borowski is driving a sheriff’s department car with serial killer Richard Speck in the back seat, having just been arrested. Speck was notorious for the murder of eight nurses in South Chicago. The photograph was featured in newspapers across the country. Borowski once told me: “I handcuffed hundreds of bad guys over the years, Speck was the worst of the worst. These are the cuffs I put on that cold blooded killer.”

Back in the day, police officers carried six-shot revolvers. Speed loaders hadn’t even been invented yet for the “wheel” gun.

A few days ago, I found another front page story printed in 1996 in a Chicago paper. In big bold letters the headline reads: “Toasting a Hero.” The story tells of a surprise reunion at Borowski’s retirement party. Nearly 35 years before he retired, Borowski, a young rookie officer saved an infant who was only 8 months old. In the front page photograph, Kathy Goloves is giving Borowski a big hug. Borowski’s partner, a state police officer (they worked together on a regional car theft task force), found Goloves and arranged the surprised meeting. In the photograph, both have tears in their eyes.

Gaining his composure, Borowski told Goloves: “I have often thought of you. The rescue is when I felt police work is where it’s at.” Goloves, with tears flowing, told Borowski: “I don’t know how to put into words what I feel, thank you very much. You are always in my heart, in my thoughts and prayers. I wanted very much to be here today.”

Goloves operates a limousine service and put one of her long white limos at Borowski’s disposal that night, with herself as the driver. She also gave Borowski a gold money clip, inscribed with the words, “Robert, with special thanks Kathy.”

Borowski was a young sheriff’s officer that night in 1961 when he was assigned to the Bedford Park Sheriff’s office for a short tour of duty. A call came in from a young father who was very distraught, because his infant daughter had stopped breathing. Borowski ran to a patrol car, arriving at the address minutes later he gave mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to the infant. With no ambulance in sight, Borowski decided to drive the baby to Christ Hospital in Oaklawn. He made it to the hospital in six minutes flat, in spite of icy roads and one of the worst winter storms to hit Chicago in 10 years.

Upon arriving at Christ Hospital the little girl started crying, a sign she was breathing once again.

The baby had stopped breathing because of an upper respiratory infection and convulsions.

Borowski and his wife, Beverly, live in Spring Lake. They have married children.

Borowski continues to try and solve the much publicized 1967 murder of his first partner on the sheriff’s force. Borowski still has confidence, the murder will be solved.

If you have had the good fortune to meet Robert Borowski since he moved to our area, then you have met a most unforgettable person.

— Bob DeHare, Grand Haven

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