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The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

KREIGER, RALPH - The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

KREIGER, RALPH (2 June 1922 - 5 June 1998) was the sheriff of Cuyahoga County from 1969 until 1976. He was the only REPUBLICAN to serve in that position in the twentieth century after FRED KOHLER was voted out of the public office in 1927. Kreiger was born in Massillon, Ohio, and received a degree in business administration from Kent State University. He served in the Coast Guard in the Pacific during WORLD WAR II. He began his career as a probation officer in Stark County and then joined the Bureau of Narcotics and rose to chief of the Chicago District. In 1963, he was appointed chief liquor enforcement officer in the Northern Ohio District. He held this position until he became sheriff.

As sheriff in the early seventies, Kreiger participated in planning the new Justice Center. He had a contentious relationship with the news media, county commissioners and other county and city officials. He believed that the county government and media had decided to limit his authority and drive him from office. In the final year of his second four year term, Kreiger was under fire because a state audit charged that he owed the county more than $92,000 that was unaccounted for or illegally spent. The charges resulted in the conviction of three of his deputies for theft. After leaving office, Kreiger ran a Kirby vacuum cleaner distributorship with his sons and taught a training program for security guards. Among his many professional organizational memberships, Kreiger was the past potentate of Al Quran Shrine and a member of the Quarry Masonic Lodge 382.

Kreiger was married to his wife Grace E. for thirty five years. They had six children: Kathleen Silvany, Laurel Kulisek, Amy, William, Timothy and Fred. Kreiger's remains are buried in Rosehill Memorial Gardens, Massillon, Ohio.

Last Modified: 16 May 2011 10:02:30 PM

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