Gregory J. Policare, Jr., 57, of Kingston passed away suddenly on Tuesday, August 1st at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania after a courageous battle with acute myeloid leukemia. Despite this devastating diagnosis in late May of this year, Greg overcame a long and challenging hospitalization and chemotherapy regimen to return home to his family and his profession for six beautiful weeks. His family will forever cherish those weeks with the man who built his life around them.
Born on March 28, 1960 in Pittston Hospital, Greg was the son of Marisa (Crocetti) and Gregory J. Policare, Sr. From his parents, Greg learned the value of dedication and hard work, a lesson that he applied to every day of his life. A 1979 graduate of Pittston Area Senior High School, Greg went on to Luzerne County Community College and earned an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice. He then attended Municipal Police Officer’s Training Academy in Wyoming, where he received his Act 120 police certification.
Greg was appointed a Pittston City police officer in August 1981. Greg rose through the ranks of the police department, serving in roles as sergeant, lieutenant, and finally the chief of police in July 2000. Greg’s accomplishments are too many to list, but some of his most treasured include initiation of the D.A.R.E. program in the Greater Pittston Area, being appointed the first and only equestrian officer, and creating the city’s special investigations unit, which is still in effect today. A highly decorated officer, Greg was recognized for his bravery and courage, earning citations of valor on numerous occasions during his career. Greg was a strong patriot, championing the Greater Pittston Area through decades of community service. Although reaching the pinnacle of his police career in the city in which he was born and raised, Greg prematurely retired in September 2001 to support his wife, his one true love, in realizing her lifelong dream to attend medical school.
Greg was the beloved and devoted husband of the former Christine Murphy. They would have celebrated their 24th wedding anniversary on August 28th of this year. Greg and Chrissy’s love story started in the city he loved when he was a sergeant and she was a hairdresser. With the unwavering love and support of her husband, Chrissy was able to bring her dreams to fruition, a practicing radiologist in our community today. Starting medical school the same year their younger baby went to kindergarten, Greg willingly assumed the entirety of the parenting and household responsibilities without complaint. Together, they shared the goal to provide a solid and enriched future for their children.
Greg continued his career of service with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with the Office of the Inspector General and transitioned to the Office of Attorney General in November of 2001. With the Attorney General’s office, Greg served as a Special Agent II in the Medicaid Fraud section, as a Special Agent IV Senior Supervisory Special Agent in the Internal Affairs Unit, a Special Agent II in the Bureau of Criminal Investigations, a Narcotics Agent II in the Bureau of Narcotics Investigation and Drug Control and as Special Agent II in the Gaming Enforcement Unit of the Bureau of Criminal Investigations. Greg brought his 20 years of experience and leadership to the Attorney General’s office, serving the citizens of the Commonwealth on many high-profile cases. Through his vast career in law enforcement, Greg was consistently recognized as a strong leader, a trusted mentor, and a skilled and accomplished investigator.
Although Greg’s life was cut abruptly short, he made a lasting impact personally and professionally. Greg was the definition of a family man, always placing the needs of his wife and children ahead of his. Greg’s legacy in law enforcement will be eternal as he mentored, inspired and motivated future generations, who will carry on his innate dedication to make the communities of Pennsylvania safer for everyone.
Greg was deeply committed to his faith, serving as an altar boy in his youth and as a Eucharistic minister for many years at multiple churches. Greg was an avid outdoorsman, considering himself a professional fisherman. He adored his two puppies, Coco and Oliver. A lifelong Packers fan, he named his daughter Madison, only because his wife wouldn’t allow her to be named Green Bay.
Greg was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Mary Ann Wanalista.
Surviving in his addition to his beloved wife are four loving children: Jacqueline Silveri, Matthew Silveri and his wife, Missy, Gabriel Policare and Madison Policare; grandchildren, Alexa Belcher and Lizzy Silveri; siblings Michael Policare and his wife, Karen and Missy Curry and her husband, Jimmy; numerous in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews.
The family would like to thank Drs. Jay Bannon, Mark Frattali, Namita Sharma, Lisa Thomas, Elizabeth Hexner, and James Mangan as well as the caring staffs of the Geisinger Health System and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania for their attention and care.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Saturday, August 5, 2017, at 9:00am in St. Ignatius Church, 339 N. Maple Avenue, Kingston. Those attending are asked to go directly to the church on Saturday morning. Interment will be at the convenience of the family. Friends may call Friday, August 4, 2017, from 4:00pm – 9:00pm at Adonizio Funeral Home, LLC, 251 William Street, Pittston. In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests blood product donations and registration with the Be the Match bone marrow donor registry as blood products sustained Greg’s life and the availability of donors offered him hope for a cure.