TRIBUTE: In honor of those New Jersey law enforcement officers who gave their lives in the past year to keep us safe — including Waldwick Police Officer Christopher Goodell and Cliffside Park Police Officer Stephen Petruzzello — here is a photo tribute from the 31st annual New Jersey Law Enforcement Memorial Service in The Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove.
ALL PHOTOS Maria D.L. Angeles for CLIFFVIEW PILOT
Those honored along with Goodell ( EOW: July 17, 2014 ) and Petruzzello ( EOW: Dec. 29, 2014 ) were Jersey City Detective Melvin Santiago ( EOW: July 13, 2014 ), Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Detective John Scott Stevens ( EOW: Jan. 21, 2015 ) and Newark Police Officer Reinaldo Arocha Jr. (Sept. 16, 2014).
Goodell, 32, was working a radar detail in his unmarked cruiser, parked on the shoulder of southbound Route 17, when it was struck by an 18-wheeler driven by a Brooklyn trucker the morning of July 17 last year. The impact instantly killed him.
Petruzzello, 22, died of critical injuries after he fellow rookie Thaier (Theo) Abdallah were hit by an SUV on a borough street the night of Dec. 27. Petruzzello, who was a special officer at the time, was promoted to a full-fledged position by the borough mayor and council hours after his death two days later.
“No matter their ages, they were too young for this,” Acting New Jersey Attorney General John J. Hoffman, the keynote speaker, told the gathering of family members, friends, law enforcement officers, prosecutors, judges and others.
They committed themselves “to keep guns, drugs and other things away from our children,” while also helping stranded motorists, rushing toward those in need and counseling youngsters seeking guidance — “and, simply, people seeking comfort and security,” Hoffman said.
“They deserve to be remembered this way.” CLICK HERE TO READ MORE….
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