Note: This version has been corrected to reflect that it was former Bedford Police Chief Donald Eunson who promoted Sgt. Robert D’Auria to Sergeant in 1985.
BEDFORD — Chief Robert Bongiorno and the Bedford Police Department regretfully announce the death of retired police Sgt. Robert D’Auria.
Sgt. D’Auria, 82, died on Wednesday, July 3. He was well known throughout the community for his 27 years of service to the Bedford Police Department.
He joined the department as a patrolman in 1971 and was promoted to Sergeant in 1985 by former Bedford Police Chief Donald Eunson, who died in February 2018.
“He was a true professional, and I always had the utmost confidence that he could handle anything that came his way,” said retired Beford Police Chief Jack McGrath, who oversaw Sgt. D’Auria after Chief Eunson retired. “He cared about the job deeply, and that showed.”
Sgt. D’Auria also served as the department’s K-9 officer at one time in his career with the Bedford Police Department, and he retired in 1998.
“One of his proudest accomplishments was his service with the Bedford Police Department,” said Bob D’Auria, Sgt. D’Auria’s son. “He loved every day of it, especially the camaraderie. He was what you would call an ‘old school’ police officer. He really valued the brotherhood within the department.”
As a teen, Chief Bongiorno admired Sgt. D’Auria because of the legacy he left behind at Arlington High School as an exemplary athlete. Although the pair graduated years apart, when Chief Bongiorno entered the law enforcement field he looked up to Sgt. D’Auria as a mentor because of their shared Arlington upbringing. Chief Bongiorno began his career at the Concord Police Department, and even had the opportunity to work with Sgt. D’Auria during a cooperative project between the two departments.
“When I came to Bedford, he was long retired, but early in my career at the Concord Police department when I had the opportunity to work cooperatively with him, I always considered him a mentor,” Chief Bongiorno said. “He was an exemplary law enforcement official, and in his younger days a remarkable athlete. In my eyes, he’s a legend.”
Sgt. D’Auria also served as a mentor to younger officers in the department during his career.
“He was a great leader of people and a mentor to me,” said Sgt. Jeff Wardwell. “He took me under his wings and over the years was more like a father figure to me.”
“Sgt. D’Auria was a great mentor for me and a positive influence on my law enforcement career,” said Sgt. Pat Towle. “He was an excellent police officer and boss. Bob was a very special person to both myself and Sgt. Wardwell. I can’t say enough of what a positive influence he was on both of us.”
Arrangements will be announced.