Charles Skalaski Obituary
 
In Memory of

Charles W. Skalaski

March 1, 1927 - November 8, 2012
Obituary

Charles W. Skalaski was born on March 1, 1927 in Bridgeton, New Jersey. He passed away on Thursday, November 8, 2012. He was graduated from Bridgeton High School in 1945 and received a football scholarship to the University of Miami, He played on Miami's Orange Bowl Team on January 1, 1946 against Holy Cross. Miami won 13 to 7 on Al Hudson's 89 yard interception with six seconds left in the game. He was graduated from the U.M. with a B. Ed. The two most unforgettable date in the law enforcement career of Charles W. Skalaski are October 13, 1949, when he took the "Oath of Office" as a Coral Gables Police Officer...
Charles W. Skalaski was born on March 1, 1927 in Bridgeton, New Jersey. He passed away on Thursday, November 8, 2012. He was graduated from Bridgeton High School in 1945 and received a football scholarship to the University of Miami, He played on Miami's Orange Bowl Team on January 1, 1946 against Holy Cross. Miami won 13 to 7 on Al Hudson's 89 yard interception with six seconds left in the game. He was graduated from the U.M. with a B. Ed.

The two most unforgettable date in the law enforcement career of Charles W. Skalaski are October 13, 1949, when he took the "Oath of Office" as a Coral Gables Police Officer (at age 22) and March 1, 988, when he was sworn in again, as Coral Gables Police Chief (on his 61st birthday!) Chief Skalaski is the epitome of a law enforcement professional who rose through the ranks in 40 years of dedicated service to the Coral Gables community.

For seven years, young officer Skalaski coached and taught Physical Education and Drivers Education in his spare time, mornings and early afternoons at Gulliver Academy before going on duty. In early years, 27 year old Officer Skalaski was honored by the Coral Gables Jr. Chamber of Commerce for his off-duty community service and for coaching kids in Little League football, baseball, Basketball and bicycle derby. He was awarded the "Outstanding Young Man of 1954" Award and the Distinguished Service Cross. Numerous middle-aged men fondly remember "Coach Skalaski" as their role model who taught them sports, ethics and respect for the law at the same time.

In August 1961 Skalaski was promoted to the rank of Sergeant, assigned to the Detective Division Throughout his career he established himself as an effective public speaker, to all age groups, on crime prevention and law enforcement, based on his police experience and knowledge of Coral Gables history. Promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in November 1967, Skalaski continued to express his love of athletics by supervising organized sports (after duty) at the Coral Gables Youth Center.

A highlight of Chief Skalaski's law enforcement career was when he completed the 92nd session of the F.B.I. National Academy in January to March 1973. During the course of instruction, major emphasis was placed on criminal law, behavioral sciences and vocational aspects of law enforcement. In April 1978, Skalaski was assigned to the Technical Services Division (Communications Records).

Promoted to the rank of Major in August 1983, he was Commander of the Operations Bureau (Detective Division, Vice Intelligence, Narcotics, Youth Resource Unit). On January 1, 1988 (his birthday) sworn in as Chief of Police.

Over the years hundred of Coral Gables kids never knew that "Santa Claus" was in reality - Charles Skalaski (as Santa's helper) distributing gifts to them from a fire truck or a police car during the Christmas holiday season.

Chief Skalaski 's rise to the highest rank in the Coral Gables Police Department is proof and recognition of his long devotion to service. He has truly earned the respect of his fellow-Police Officers and community leaders for his attitude of "working together". He tried to maintain high morale by fair and equal treatment to all police personnel as well as the public. Above all, Chief Skalaski stressed the Coral Gables Police Department traditional philosophy - to serve and protect, to enforce the law efficiently with courteous personal service.

Chief Charles Skalaski was a member of the Coral Gables Elks Lodge #1676 and Past Exalted Ruler twice. He was the Past President of the Coral Gables People to People Program, Inc. and was a Board Member of Coral Gables Rotary Club.

In 1990, Chief Skalaski served as President of the Dade County Association of Chiefs of Police. Charles leaves his wife Fay of 25 years, 4 children, Donna Marie (Steve), William (Barbara), Charlie (Ann) and Carolyn (Earl) and 4 stepchildren, Kimberly (Kevin), Ross (Terry), Douglas (Danielle) and William and 18 grandchildren. Private services were held.

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