WOODBRIDGE – New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association President Pat Colligan released the following statement on today’s procession and non-denominational service for the families of the 45 public safety officials who lost their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The three-mile long procession had well over 100 vehicles and 25 motor units and began at the PNC Arts Center parking lot before reaching its destination at Epic Church in Sayreville for a non-denominational service honoring the fallen and their families.  Over 30 Honor Guards participated and State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan served as Master of Ceremony, joined by Attorney General Matt Platkin and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin.

Viewers lined Parkway overpasses to view the procession and pay tribute to the fallen officials.

Said President Colligan: “I would like to thank everyone who participated in today’s procession, anyone who joined us at Epic Church and also the many people who took a moment to pay their respects to our fallen brothers and sisters on the Parkway today.  Superintendent Callahan’s words were a true inspiration and I know the families we honored today will never forget the outpouring of emotion and support put forward by so many.

We were proud to have the opportunity to partner with so many other public safety representatives to give the 45 public safety professionals and their families the proper tribute they deserved.  These brave men and women were not afforded the ability to work remotely or ‘Zoom’ to their calls and, instead, they were directly on the front lines in the middle of the global pandemic.

Their professionalism and bravery were emblematic of so many thousands of health care workers and other essential workers who continued to bravely go to work each day, even as COVID-19 tore through our neighborhoods and ravaged the health of communities across New Jersey and the world. 

Today’s procession and service are something I will never forget.  My hope is that the affected family members we had the opportunity to honor will always carry with them the appreciation and respect we have for the ultimate sacrifice their loved ones made in service to their community.”

Following are the public safety officials that were honored today:

Latasha Andrews               New Jersey State Police

Luis Andujar                     Cumberland City Corrections

Robert Bell                        Burlington County Corrections

Vincent Butler                   New Jersey Department of Corrections

Irving Callender III           Newark Police Department

Richard Campbell             Edison Division of Fire

Michael Clegg                   Newark Police Department

Michael Connors               Newark Police Department

Zeb Craig                           Hudson County Corrections

Christopher Cronin            Old Bridge Police Department

Gerard Eick                       Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office

Rocco Ferraro                    New Jersey State Police

David Formeza                  Perth Amboy Police Department

Daniel Francis                   Newark Police Department

Tolbert Furr                       Newark Police Department

Maria & Dwayne Gibbs    New Jersey Department of Corrections

Joseph Goertz                    Lakewood Police Department

Matthew Horton                Ocean County Sheriff’s Department

Vincent Intiso                   East Orange Fire Department

Edward Jamandron           New Jersey Department of Corrections

Daniel Krupa                    New Jersey Department of Correction

Brian McAdams Sr.          Newark Police Department

Robert McCormack          New Jersey Department of Corrections

Richard T. McKnight       Newark Police Department

Robert Miller                    Clifton Police Department

Hector Moya                     Newark Police Department

Alterek Patterson              Bedminster Police Department

Al Mustafa Pearson           Essex County Corrections

Nelson Perdomo                New Jersey Department of Corrections

James Peri                         Bloomfield Police Department

John Phelan                       Paterson Police Department

Matthew Razukas              New Jersey State Police

Charles Roberts                 Glen Ridge Police Department

Alex Ruperto                     Union City Police Department

Julius Sabo                        New Jersey State Police

Francesco Scorpo              Paterson Police Department

Marcus Thomas                 Newark Police Department

Israel Tolentino                 Passaic Fire Department

Matthew Vogel                 Hudson County Sheriff’s

Bernard Wadell Sr.           Hudson County Corrections

Gary Walker                     Bloomingdale Police Department

Lowery Ware                    Department of Homeland Security

Erick Whitaker                 New Jersey Department of Corrections

Shawn Williams               Hudson County Corrections

The National Anthem was performed by Sgt. Melissa Rose from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.

Welcome to Epic Church and Invocation was done by Pastor John Wagner, Epic Church.

Invited Keynote Speakers were Speaker Coughlin, General Platkin and Lisa Preslar of the Garden State Concerns of Police Survivors.

Rabbi Mendy Charlebach of Rutgers Chabad led a Spiritual Reading of the Old Testament.

Monsignor Geno Sylva from the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist led a Spiritual Reading of the New Testament.

New Jersey United Pipe Bands performed Amazing Grace.

Pastor James Powderley of the Brigantine Bible Church provided Words of Inspiration.

The Stafford Township Police Department provided the Gun Salute.

Taps, Robert Krupinski, (Ret), Bergen County Sheriff’s Department.

Closing Words of Hope were delivered by Bishop Apostolos of Medeia, Greek Orthodox Archidiocese of America.

The New Jersey United Pipe Bands played God Bless America.

Today’s service was jointly sponsored by: County Prosecutors Association of New Jersey - New Jersey Association of Chiefs of Police - New Jersey Career Fire Chiefs Association - New Jersey Concerns of Police Survivors - New Jersey County Jail Wardens Association - New Jersey Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association - New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police - New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association - New Jersey State Troopers Superior Officers’ Association - New Jersey Survivors of the Triangle - Police Unity Tour - Professional Firefighters Association of New Jersey - Sheriffs Association of New Jersey - State Troopers NCO Association -  State Troopers Fraternal Association   

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