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June 5, 2014

CSU to dedicate memorial garden

By Timothy Simko

Cleveland State University is planning to publicly honor former Cleveland State Chief of Police Lester Mitchell’s life by dedicating a campus bench and memorial garden in his name.


Mitchell passed away Feb. 2 after being struck by a passing vehicle while changing a tire along Interstate Highway 480 westbound.


Mitchell joined the Cleveland State Police Department in 1979 as a patrol officer. One year later, he was assigned to the Detective Bureau before being promoted to Detective Bureau Supervisor in 1984.


He was promoted to Commander of Police in 1992 before being promoted to Deputy Chief of Police one year later.


He was appointed as the Assistant Chief of Police in 1996 and in 2000 became the Chief of Police.


In 2006, Mitchell retired from his position as Chief of Police.

 


“The newly created hardscaped area will be highly visible at the entry to the police station,” said Joseph Han, assistant vice president of facilities and safety. “A prominent and fitting location in front of the Campus Safety Building.”


According to Han, the work will be completed in September 2014.


On Oct. 9, Mitchell’s wife, Dr. Diane Dillard-Mitchell, along with President Berkman will dedicate the bench and garden to the late police chief.


Following his death, many friends and colleagues gave their condolences in his guestbook on legacy.com.


“I worked for Chief Mitchell about 13 years ago, and he truly encouraged me to move foward with my goals,” said Nicole James of South Euclid, Ohio. “He motivated me to take the extra steps. He was a very distinguished man that had great values.”


“So many fond memories of Les while working at CSUPD,” said Rose Cutler of Fairview Park, Ohio. “May God bless you and carry you through this sad time.”


The Cleveland State University Foundation is inviting colleagues to make a gift in memory of Chief Mitchell.


All funds collected will directly support the campus bench and will help to provide a permanent memorial in his memory.