Beloved NJ police officer identified in suicide at hospital, report says
🔴 Authorities have identified the victim of a hospital shooting in Vineland
🔴 The retired Millville police officer shot himself in the head
🔴 He followed in his father's footsteps to serve their community
VINELAND — Authorities in Cumberland County are investigating the death of a retired police officer after a shooting at an area hospital over the weekend.
Michael S. Romanik Jr., 57, died by suicide using a firearm at Inspira Medical Center in Vineland on Saturday, the Cherry Hill Courier Post reported.
There were concerns of an active shooter in the building when the gunshot rang out around 8:40 a.m., but Vineland police later said it was an "isolated incident."
Romanik, a retired police officer in the neighboring city of Millville, had been a patient at the hospital for a few days before he shot himself in the head. He was taken to the emergency room shortly before his death, Vineland police Lt. Kevin Vai said to the Post.
An outpouring of support for Romanik flooded social media in the days after his death.
"So many fun times together. You were one of a kind and were loved by many. Thanks for your service to the City of Millville. You will be missed more than you will ever know. Thanks for all the laughs," said Barry Smith, a Millville historian who knew the retired cop.
Romanik served the Millville police for over two decades before he retired in 2010, according to state pension records.
In the late 1980's, Romanik at age 22 joined the local department where his father, Michael S. Romanik Sr. worked. His father served the Millville police for 26 years and died in May 2020, according to his obituary.
Romanik and his father scored highly, both achieving exactly 294 out of 300, on their firearm exams at the New Jersey State Police Academy in Sea Girt, according to media reports.
Investigators are looking into whether Romanik, who was licensed to have a firearm, had a carry permit.
Vineland police and Millville police did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
If you feel you or someone you know may be in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 9-8-8. Click here to chat online with a trained counselor.