Hundreds will gather at in Seaford Saturday morning in memory of fallen Nassau County police officers killed in the line of duty.
The Nassau Police Running Club is hosting the Nassau County Police Department Police Officer Memorial Run in honor of fallen police officers Gary Farley of Levittown, Michael J. Califano of Wantagh and Geoffrey J. Breitkopf of Selden.
Founded 15 years ago in honor of Farley, the annual run has attracted hundreds of supporters throughout the years. According to the Nassau Police Running Club's website, Farley, a graduate of Levittown's MacArthur High School, was a caring, dedicated officer. Farley died on March 7, 1993 after responding to a complaint of a violent mental aided case in Massapequa, leaving his wife and children who reside in Levittown.
"Gary was an easygoing, friendly person with a real sense of humor," the website reads. "The tragedy of Gary's death was felt throughout the whole department."
This year, the police department has decided to honor two more of their fallen heros, both who were killed on duty earlier this year.
Califano, a Wantagh resident, was on Feb. 4 in the line of duty while conducting a vehicle and traffic law stop on the westbound side of the Long Island Expressway at exit 39 in Old Westbury. Saturday's walk will benefit Califano's three children - Michael, Christopher and Andrew - with scholarship funds.
During a to benefit the Califano children at , Seaford resident and lifelong friend of the fallen officer, Franca Cascione, spoke to Patch regarding Califano's death.
"Mike was such a great guy, always joking around," she said. "He would've been here for any one of us."
Breitkopf was taken from his family just one month after Califano's tragic death. A special operations officer, Breitkopf was shot and killed March 12 by a fellow law enforcement worker. In the chaos of a shooting in Massapequa Park, after the police shot and killed a young man known to worship Satan, an officer mistakenly shot Breitkopf thinking he was a suspect.
Funds from Saturday's run will be donated to scholarship funds in the officer's names. The race begins at 9 a.m. Entry fee is $22 pre-registered or $27 the morning of.