GoComics – Dick Tracy Comic Strip
by Joe Staton and Mike Curtis
Some of the other Dick Tracy ‘Crimestopper’ Hall of Fame include:
Eliot Ness – Arguably the most famous American policeman of the 20th Century, and thought to have possibly been a model for Dick Tracy (certainly Tracy’s first, and most frequently recurring villain, “The Big Boy,” was modeled on Al Capone). In addition to his tenure as a Prohibition Agent, and later, as an agent of the Alcohol Tax Unit, he was Cleveland’s Director of Public Safety from 1935-42, the youngest major city police chief in the United States.
Bill Tilghman – Arguably the greatest of all frontier police officers who, in a 50-year career in law enforcement, served as a deputy sheriff in Ford County, KS, the town marshal of Dodge City, a deputy US marshal for the newly opened Oklahoma territory, a special investigator for the Governor of OK after statehood, the police chief of Oklahoma City, and the marshal of Cromwell, OK.
Bob Fabian – One of the most famous of all Scotland Yard detectives, and the subject of a internationally successful fictionalized TV series, Fabian of the Yard, based on his autobiography. Awarded the UK’s top law enforcement decoration, the King’s Police Medal, after disabling a terrorist bomb in Piccadilly, London.
Ernst Gennat – Brilliant Berlin homicide detective in pre-Nazi Germany, who tracked down multiple murderer Peter Kurten (the real-life predator whose crime spree inspired the classic film M), and who first coined the term “serial killer.”
Dorothy Uhnak – Decorated NYC Transit Police Detective, who became something of a local celebrity after subduing a much larger predator in a subway station with some fancy martial arts moves, she later became a best-selling, award-winning novelist.
Shri Sandip Dadaji Khiratkar – Inspector in India’s Railway Protection Force, the largest railroad police force in the world, who, during the Mumbai attacks, who, with his partner, engaged several of of the terrorists in a furious gun battle, cutting off their escape from the train station they had just bombed. He was awarded India’s highest decoration for valor in law enforcement, the President’s Police Medal.
“Jigsaw John” St. John – Served 51 years in LAPD, 43 if them as the top homicide detective in Los Angeles, becoming one of the foremost authorities on serial killers, and the inspiration for the TV series, Jigsaw John.
Dave Toma – A brother New Jerseyan. A master of disguise who worked as an undercover vice/narcotics detective in Newark, and was called by the NY Daily News “the greatest cop alive.” Like you, he is now a motivational speaker. Inspiration for the TV shows Toma and Baretta.
Bass Reeves – Former slave who, after the Civil War went west and became one of the best of the hundreds of deputy US marshals who policed Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma), working out of Judge Isaac Parker’s federal district court in Ft. Smith, AR. Like Tilghman, arguably the finest of all frontier lawmen.
Sam Steele – Joined the Northwest Mounted Police as a staff constable in 1873, the year the force was founded, and was promoted to superintendent (roughly a major or a lt. colonel) within five years. Policed the Yukon territory with such skill, without once ever having had to fire his pistol, that he is remembered today as the “Greatest of All Mounties.”
Jack Manion – Legendary detective in San Francisco (my home town) and commander of SFPD’s “Chinatown Squad” for 20 years. Known and revered by the residents of the neighborhood, who called him “The Cat Who Never Sleeps.”
Mary Sullivan – Young widow who joined the NYPD as a Policewoman, and who, in 1918, became the first female homicide detective in America, and, possibly, the world. Promoted to Detective First Grade, was appointed head of the Policewomen’s Bureau. Her autobiography, My Double Life, described her difficulty juggling the dual responsibilities of being both a professional cop and a single mother.
Frank Hamer – In a 40-year career, served as a deputy sheriff, a small-town police chief, a big-city major crimes detective, and a federal investigator, but earned most of his fame as the greatest Texas Ranger of the 20th Century. Best-remembered for nailing Bonnie and Clyde.
Francesco Vincent “Frank” Serpico is a retired American New York City Police Department officer who is famous for blowing the whistle on police corruption in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Joe Pistone aka “Donnie Brasco” FBI Agent who infilitrated the Bonano Crime Family in the 1970’s busting up the NYC Mafia.