A ceremony was held this past Tuesday evening dedicating a memorial bridge in memory of a Nassau County police officer from Wantagh who was killed in the line of duty earlier this year.
The newly dedicated “Police Officer Michael J. Califano Memorial Bridge” is near the site where Califano of Wantagh was on Feb. 4 on the Long Island Expressway in Old Westbury while conducting a routine traffic stop. The bridge was dedicated at a ceremony in Mineola attended by approximately 100 members of Officer Califano’s family, including his wife Jackie and three sons Michael, Christopher, and Andrew as well as more than 100 members of the Nassau County Police Department.
State Sen. Charles Fuschillo,R-Merrick, and Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel, D-Great Neck, authored a law, co-sponsored by Assemblyman Dave McDonough, R-North Merrick, renaming the Glen Cove Road bridge overpass which crosses over the Long Island Expressway the “Police Officer Michael J. Califano Memorial Bridge.” The law was passed by both the Senate and Assembly in June and signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo in August.
“Michael Califano was a devoted police officer and a loving family man who always went above and beyond to help others whether he knew them or not," said Sen. Fuschillo. "We must never, ever forget the ultimate sacrifice he made for the people of Nassau County. Renaming this bridge in Officer Califano’s honor will help ensure that his legacy of service and heroism will always be remembered."
“I am pleased to have been part of the initiative and cosponsor this
measure making this tribute to Officer Michael Califano a reality," said Assemblywoman McDonough. "Memorializing Officer Califano through this tribute will ensure that the people of Nassau County never forget his dedication to our communities."
Officer Califano was a 12-year veteran of the Nassau County Police Department before his tragic death. He was killed when his patrol car, which was stopped on the shoulder of the Long Island Expressway with its lights flashing, was hit from behind by a flat bed truck driven by John Kaley of New Britain, Conn. Kaley was arrested by police and with criminally negligent homicide.