William T. L'Estrange - Police Chief 1948 to 1957

Sergeant William L’Estrange, a veteran of twenty years in the Bratenahl Police Department, was appointed as Bratenahl’s second police chief by Mayor Edward Garfield on October 31, 1948. He succeeded Chief Patrick Clark, who died in June 1948.

William Thomas L’Estrange was born on November 1, 1898, to William and Anna L’Estrange. He grew up on West 48th Street, graduated from St. Ignatius High Schools, and attended St. Ignatius College (now John Carroll University). He left college in 1915 to enter the construction business with a brother.

William married Harriet Devine around 1923. They had two children: Nancy Ann (Desforges), born on October 20, 1924, and William Thomas Jr., born on October 1, 1929.

A short time later, the brothers gave up the construction business. William went to Columbus to work on the American Insurance Union Tower. His last construction job was on the Terminal Tower in Cleveland.

L’Estrange was appointed to the Bratenahl Police force on January 4, 1928. He became a Sergeant on March 1, 1933. Two years after being appointed chief, He led the investigation into the break-in and robbery at the Mather’s Gwinn mansion.

William retired in October 1957 because of ill health and died in his home at 295 East 197th Street on December 19, 1957. When he was appointed chief, he said he would move to Bratenahl when he could find a house. That never happened. He was buried at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Cleveland. Harriet died on January 3, 1981, and was buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Brook Park.