Milford officer to be honored
On May 16, during National Police Week, Sgt. Kevin Furlong will be recognized at the 16th annual Officer of the Month Awards Luncheon. Furlong, who has been a member of the Milford Police Department for nearly 10 years, was the first officer on the scene after a deadly home invasion at the Cates' residence in Mont Vernon on Oct. 4, 2009.
On that dark morning, Furlong responded to a call from 11-year-old Jaimie Cates who had witnessed the brutal murder of her mother and had herself been savagely attacked. At the scene, Furlong saw the girl through the window, and rushed to knock down the door and come to her aid.
Four armed teens intent on robbery had entered the home about 4 a.m., with plans to kill anyone they found inside. Kimberly Cates, 42, was fatally attacked with a machete and a knife as she lay in bed. Jaime survived, but suffered severe injuries.
Furlong, who damaged his shoulder when he broke down the door, has been reluctant to accept praise or recognition, but Chief Frederick Douglas said he believes in giving credit where credit is due. He nominated Furlong for the national recognition.
Furlong was presented a New Hampshire Union Leader Hero Award in 2010.
'I haven't had a chance to visit the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial yet,' said Douglas, who is set to retire on June 30. 'It will be an honor to make the trip to Washington with Sgt. Furlong.'
But the trip will be somber, he said, a time to recognize that the service all police officers pledge to provide to their communities sometimes comes at a heavy price.
Greenland Police Chief Michael Maloney died April 12 after Cullen Mutrie ambushed police as they tried to serve a search warrant in a drug investigation, wounding four officers. Maloney was shot and killed as he tried to pull officers to safety.
'Suffice it to say that more probable than not any law enforcement officer would say that they are not a hero, but just doing their job,' Douglas said.
In addition to honoring Furlong for his bravery and Maloney for his sacrifice, Douglas will be joined by Sgt. Sean Plumer, who will ride into the Capitol with the Police Unity Tour, an annual bicycle tour that raises money for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. Plumer will ride along with four Nashua police officers - Sgt. Keith Dillon, Detective Alex Gorman and Officers Todd Moriarty and John Cinelli.
'I'm doing the ride because there is no better way to speak for the brave law enforcement officers who have been killed in the line of duty than to ride for their memory and valor,' said Plumer.
The 300-mile ride will start at Ground Zero in New York City and take the riders through New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland before ending in Washington, D.C. on May 12. Plumer said the money raised is used to inscribe the names of fallen officers on the memorial, including Chief Maloney's, which will be added next year.
For more information visit www.lawmemorial.org, or for sponsorship information for the Police Unity Tour, visit http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/sean-plumer/2012-police-unity-tour-chapter-37-new-york