Memorial to Dana E. Harwood

End of Watch: September 25, 1972
Rank: Officer   Badge No. 3059
Age: 23   Years of Service: 3 year
Location of Death: Harbor Dock
Duty Assignment: Harbor Dock, SOD

 

Circumstance:  

Officer Dana Harwood drowned at the Harbor Dock at the Maine Avenue Pier while attempting to dock a 16-foot rowboat. He attempted to start the motor while it was in gear, causing the boat to lurch forward. He was knocked into the water and struck his head.  His body was recovered several hours later.

Biography:

Officer Harwood had served with the agency for three years. He was survived by his mother and grandmother.

 

Articles from the Washington Post – transcribed by Dave Richardson, MPD/Ret.
THE DROWNING DEATH OF OFFICER DANA HARWOOD ON SEPTEMBER 25, 1972.
WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED SEPTEMBER 26, 1972, PAGE C2
Harbor Patrolman Drowns
A harbor patrolman drowned yesterday after he fell from a rowboat near the police dock on Maine Avenue.
Witnesses said Officer Dana Harwood, 24, apparently fell into the water when he started the motor while it was in gear. They said Harwood either hit his head on the boat or the propeller.

The accident occurred at 1:30 p.m. as Harwood and his partner, Officer John S. Brown, returned to the harbor unit’s pier on the Washington Channel of the Potomac River.

Brown was docking the police department’s 28-foot cabin cruiser when Harwood attempted to start the motor on the 16-foot rowboat that they had been towing.

The two officers had been working since 7:30 a.m. in an unsuccessful attempt to find the body of a man who reportedly drowned Sunday in the Anacostia River.

Although no one saw Harwood fall into the water, moments later he was seen gripping the side of the rowboat as it churned around in the muddy water. Witnesses said Harwood apparently was not fully conscious, as he made no attempt to save himself. Harwood slipped into the water before rescuers could reach him.

A deck hand on the cruise ship docked at the Mount Vernon Pier, John W. McDonald, was the first person to dive in and attempt to find Harwood’s body.

But the 22-foot channel was so murky that nothing could be seen. Later, scuba divers from the harbor unit and the Navy joined the search.

Harwood’s body was recovered at 4:45 p.m. after 10 divers had made up to 100 dives, crawling and feeling in four feet of silt at the bottom.

Harwood, 24, lived with his mother, Edith L., and his grandmother, in Kentland, Prince George’s County. A native of the Washington area, he joined the department in 1969.

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PARTIAL WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED SEPTEMBER 27, 1972, PAGE C6

HARWOOD, DANA E.
Officer D.C. Police Department
Suddenly on Monday, September 25, 1972, OFFICER DANA E. HARWOOD of Landover, Md., son of Edith L. Harwood; grandson of Ollie Whitehurst. Officer Harwood rests at the Lanham Funeral Home of Robert G. Beall, 9013 Annapolis Rd., Lanham, Md., where the family will receive friends on Wednesday, 7 to 9 p.m. and Thursday 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Service will be held on Friday, September 29, at 10 a.m., Kent Baptist Church, 7506 Cleveland Ave., Kentland, Md. Interment Fort Lincoln Cemetery.

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THE BELOW INCIDENT INVOLVED OFFICER HARWOOD EARLIER THAT SAME YEAR.
WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED FEBRUARY 18, 1972, PAGE B2
Man With Knife Slain As He Confronts Police
A knife-wielding Northwest Washington man was shot and killed in his home by a policeman during a scuffle with three officers who had been called there, police reported.

The dead man was identified as Jack Cooper, 50, of 4607 5th St. NW.
Cooper was pronounced dead of a gunshot wound in the chest at 11:58 p.m. at the Washington Hospital Center. The shooting occurred about 11:30 p.m.

Police said the incident began about 11:15 p.m. when they received a call from Cooper’s stepson, Reginald Dickens, 14, saying that Cooper was threatening the youth’s mother, Dalgiler Cooper, with a knife.

Three fourth district policemen in two scout cars, Officers Willie Kirk, Dana Harwood and Robert E. Fisher, went to the house, a two-story, detached brick structure.

The officers went upstairs, to a second-floor hallway, where police said, Cooper threatened them with a large kitchen knife.
Then, according to homicide detectives, Cooper grabbed Fisher by the throat and knocked Fisher and Harwood to the floor.
Cooper then seemed about ready to stab Fisher, police said, and Kirk drew his service revolver and shot Cooper. The knife was recovered at the scene.

Customarily, police involved in fatal shootings are placed on administrative leave with pay during the investigation.