Chaplain’s Corner, October 2011

The beautiful blessing each person has is an opportunity to fulfill and enhance the life of a fellow human being.

The privilege and honor of wearing a police officer’s badge is the active fulfillment of the obligation “I am my brother’s keeper.”

But police officers need the opportunity to share their experiences and expertise with other members of society. This helps each officer reduce the tension and stress he/she faces each tour of duty.

The Long Island Shields has provided an invaluable resource for active and retired officers to help them cope with their daily travails.
Networking is an extremely important tool to get the support when needed. It is also a great source of pleasure for those who offer their expertise and support for those who are in need.

I personally thank the LI Shields for allowing me to practice my humor so that I can finally appear on Broadway Theater as an entertainer.
God bless each of you for making someone’s life better.

May the Shield of the Almighty protect you in your comings and goings, Amen.

Rabbi Tzvi Berkowitz

 

President’s Message, October 2011

I will start this message by thanking Joe Wolff for his fine video presentation of the Police Arlington Remembrance Ceremony in Cypress Hills cemetery. It was both dignified and humbling.

It was good to see that Governor Andrew Cuomo recently signed the “Guaranteed Pension after 20 Years of Service” bill into law. Finally, an officer who performs 20 years of service has some form of pension protection.

Joe Wolff has assured me that the guest speaker for our October 27th meeting will be Mr. Peter Hellman, author of the national best seller Chief, a profile of Chief of Detectives (NYPD), Al Seedman. Peter will discuss many cases that Chief Seedman shared with him, and will disclose the real reason Chief Seedman suddenly retired from the NYPD in April 1972. Peter will have his books for sale and will gladly personalize them.

On a personal note, I wish to congratulate Shields Honorary Member and my friend, Gary Hudes, chosen Honorary Law Enforcement Man of the Year by the Nassau DAI.

While sharing your Thanksgiving dinner with family and friends, keep in your thoughts and prayers the many brave men and women defending our country who are unable to have dinner at home.

Remember, Tuesday November 8th is Election Day. Go out and vote for the candidate of your choice. Every vote does count.

Hope we see you on the 27th; it should be an interesting meeting.

Fraternally,
Richie

Police Officers of the Month, October 2011

As police officers we take an oath to protect life and property. When you respond to your first aided case that is a fatality that oath begins to become more personal. You begin to have a new found respect for the sanctity of human life. As time goes on and your experience grows somehow it does not get any easier to see the loss of life. You put on your professional face and try to comfort the people left behind because you have a job to do . All the while your respect for life is growing deeper and deeper, while outwardly to others you may appear to have become distant and callous. As professional law enforcement officers we know that is merely a defense mechanism we develop in order to do our job. We know how precious life is and how in the blink of an eye how it can change forever.

Our honoree tonight demonstrated this respect for human life and the actions he and fellow detectives took to preserve it.

On July 17, 2011 while at his desk in the 103 Pct. squad he answered a telephone call from a frantic female who told him her daughter had called her and told her “I took a bunch of pills . I want to kill myself . Kiss my kids . I’m sorry.”

The caller identified herself as Beth Walz of Honolulu, Hawaii. She told Det. Lopresti her daughter, Averie Kenery a flight attendant for Delta Airlines had made the call and was staying someplace in Queens, all she had was an intersection Hillside Ave. and Lefferts Blvd. Relatives had begun randomly dialing Queens precincts and she had reached Det. Lopresti.

With just an intersection Det. Lopresti jumped in an unmarked car with three other detectives and raced to that location. Upon his arrival he observed there there were only two private residences on the block the one other piece of information the mother had. He observed a young woman dressed in a flight attendants uniform entering one of the buildings in question and he asked if this was used by the Delta crews. She responded it was and the detectives began banging on doors in an effort to locate MS. Kenery, on the doors there was no response the detectives broke down the doors and did a search of the room. Still unable to locate the aided, Det. Lopresti was informed the mother still had an open line to her daughter , bit she stopped talking, as the detectives shouted her name Ms.Walz told a detective who had her on the line “i can hear them calling her name , they have to be close.” Upon a second search of one room the young woman was found wedged between a wall and a bed covered by a sheet, unconscious but alive. She was rushed to Jamaica Hospital where she spent sveral days in a coma but is recovering.

For his actions in saving the life of a young woman and putting himsef at risk in doing so. He sustained a seperated shoulder and a broken toe when he broke in several doors we commend Det. Charles Lopresti . His actions and those of his fellow detectives bring credit to themselves , the 103 Pct. and the New York City Police Department.