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Richard "Rich" Costello

Obituary for Richard "Rich" Costello

December 2, 2021
Southampton, Pennsylvania


Richard "Rich" Costello of Southampton, formerly of Philadelphia, passed away on December 2, 2021 peacefully with his loved ones by his side. Rich is survived by his beloved children Michael Costello, MaryKate Black (Matthew), Jack Costello (Meghann), Jimmy Costello (Jennifer), Elizabeth Costello, Marie Costello and loving grandchildren Grace, Owen, Lauren, and Charlie; his longtime partner Cheryl Butman; and his siblings Brian Costello (Crystal) and Amy Brier (Marc).

Rich was born on April 6, 1951 in Philadelphia to Dorothy and Edward Costello. He attended Gwynedd Mercy Academy, Holy Ghost Preparatory School, and Saint Joseph's University. With aspirations of going to law school and becoming a District Attorney, Rich decided to join the Philadelphia Police Department in order to better serve the public and to gain a full understanding of the justice system from the ground up. On December 11, 1973, Rich's career trajectory took a significant turn when he was shot twice in the head while on duty during his rookie year on the force. Through this experience, Rich saw first-hand the inadequate benefits and compensation provided by the City of Philadelphia to police officers at the time. Seeing significant wrongs that needed to be righted, Rich began working with the Fraternal Order of Police - Lodge 5 in order to improve police benefits. Rich rose up the ranks and served as President from 1988 to 1990, then again from 1994 - 2002. During this time, Rich fought tirelessly for his fellow officers, ensuring they were treated fairly and compensated justly. He gained local and national renown as an honest, vociferous, and fierce police labor leader, frequently butting heads with city officials and police commissioners, and backing down to no one - all to ensure his troops and their families were properly taken care of. Rich stepped down in 2002 and retired from the department in 2008 (achieving the rank of Captain) in order to spend more time with his family, relishing in his role as loving father and father-in-law, doting grandfather, and devoted partner to Cheryl.

A tough cop. A fierce warrior, leader and defender of police. A beloved son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, partner, and friend. He will be missed immeasurably.

Relatives and friends are invited to share in Rich's Life Celebration Thursday, December 9, 2021 from 6:00 – 9:00 PM at John F. Givnish of Academy Rd. 10975 Academy Rd., Phila, PA 19154 and Friday morning at St. Dominic Church, 8504 Frankford Ave., Phila, PA 19136 starting 9:00 followed by his funeral mass 10:00 AM. Interment private. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Rich's memory to FOP 5 Survivors fund C/O FOP Lodge 5, 11630 Caroline Rd., Phila, PA 19154 or Philadelphia PAL, 3068 Belgrade St., Phila, PA 19134 would be appreciated by his family. To share your fondest memories of Rich, visit


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John F. Givnish Funeral Home

10975 Academy Road
Philadelphia, PA 19154
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