ShareThis Page
Retired Penn Hills police officer Fran Ferragonio to be laid to rest | TribLIVE.com
Penn Hills

Retired Penn Hills police officer Fran Ferragonio to be laid to rest

Michael DiVittorio
1224736_web1_fran

Fran Ferragonio Jr. spent most of his life helping young people learn from the past and make better choices.

He retired as a juvenile detective with the Penn Hills Police Department in 2004 after a 25-year career.

Ferragonio specialized in community policing as a DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) and GREAT (Gang Resistance Education and Training) officer.

“He did a lot of work with the kids,” police Chief Howard Burton said. “Very community oriented, a real good officer. He was very much involved with the youth. I’m just shocked that he died.”

Francis P. Ferragonio Jr. died Tuesday, May 28, 2019, after a long fight with respiratory issues. He was 64.

He was a member of Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 91, and his onetime colleagues took to Facebook Tuesday to offer their condolences to the Ferragonio family.

“Today we lost a great man,” the post read. “In retirement he was always working and spending time with his family, but always took time to say hello in passing at Kennywood or just out and about. … We send our thoughts and prayers from out executive board and members.”

Ferragonio was named Western Pennsylvania Crime Prevention Officer of the Year in 2002.

He would frequent the halls of Penn Hills School District buildings as an officer and worked as a Linton Middle School history teacher for seven years.

“I was really, really sad to see that he passed away really unexpected,” district Superintendent Nancy Hines said. “I’ve never heard anybody say a bad thing about Fran. He just clearly loved kids. He was a beloved guy. He was a really friendly face for the kids as an officer.”

Ferragonio encouraged young people to be positive and work hard to achieve their goals. No one heard that message more than his daughters, Lauren and Sarah.

“He was at anything that me and my sister did,” Lauren Ferragonio said. “He was our biggest cheerleader at orchestra concerts, soccer games. He was just selfless, kind, compassionate, always willing to help anybody and everybody in need. He was a true angel on earth.”

Lauren Ferragonio of Plum is in her seventh season with the Pittsburgh Passion women’s football team.

She said her father was like part of the game-day staff and really helped the team.

“He just wanted to be involved,” she said. “Everybody’s just in total shock because it was rather sudden. Everybody’s kind of heartbroken. Everybody had their own special relationship with him. He just loved everybody so much.

“He was a jack of all trades. He wore many hats. He was a bright light in a dark world, and it’s going to be a little dimmer without him.”

After calling it a career in Penn Hills law enforcement, Ferragonio served as a supervisor for Kennywood’s public safety department, a stress management presenter for Personal Growth Management and a hypnotherapist for his own hypnosis and life strategies company. Hobbies included ventriloquism and collecting Snoopy and Jiminy Cricket memorabilia.

In January 2018, he was sworn to a four-year term as Plum’s tax collector.

Ferragonio was preceded in death by his father, Fran Sr., and his mother, Madeline. He is survived by his wife, Patricia, his two daughters, his brother Anthony and his sister Annette.

Michael DiVittorio is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Michael at 412-871-2367, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Local | Penn Hills
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.