Former Grosse Pointe Park fire chief Philip M. Costa, Age 97, passed away Sunday, September 22, 2019,
in Houston, Texas. Born May 1, 1922, in Detroit, he served in the U.S. Army 33 month in the South Pacific in General MacArthur's headquarters. He joined the Grosse Pointe Park Fire Department April 3, 1944. Working his way through the ranks, he was named fire chief in 1972. He retired in 1990 to spend more time with his beloved wife, Anne.
Affectionately known as "The Chief," he was scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 147 for many years.
He was involved in the Grosse Pointe Park Little League as a coach in the 1950's and 60's. He helped build the baseball fields behind Defer Elementary School in the GPPLL's early days.
The Chief was an avid baseball fan and played on several Army teams during World War II. He counted among his treasured memories that getting a hit off Detroit Tigers ace Hal Newhouser during their high school days.
When the city voted to combine the police and fire departments in 1986, he was charged with training the police officers in fire fighting. He was especially proud of the number of officers who complimented him on being an excellent instructor.
In retirement, The Chief worked part time at Windmill Pointe Park, where he made many new friends. After his wife passed away in 2003, he moved to Houston to live with his son, Phillip.
The Chief is survived by his sons, Michael (Alix), Phillip "Skip" (Dawn Lee) and David (Donna);
grandchildren, Mark, Michael, Joshua (Holly), Brooke (Josh), Heather, Fraser (Shona) and Erin and great grandchildren, Rylee, Jaxton, Leighton, Rylan, Ryder and Natalie. In addition to his wife, he was pre deceased by his son, Patrick.
Visitation will be at Bagnasco & Calcaterra Funeral Home 25800 Harper Avenue, St. Clair Shores Friday September 27, 2019 from 1:00 pm to 9:00 pm. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated 11 am. Saturday, September 28, at St. Ambrose Catholic Church, 15020 Hampton, Grosse Pointe Park. Visitation begins at 10:00 am at the church.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Veterans of Foreign Wars at vfw.org or any local post of donors choice.