2005-07-01 / Community

Healing Mass Held For 101 Precinct Officer

By Miriam Rosenberg Contributing Editor

By Miriam Rosenberg
Contributing Editor

Officer Mitchell’s wife speaks with one of the pastors who officiated at the healing mass following the service.  Photos by Miriam RosenbergOfficer Mitchell’s wife speaks with one of the pastors who officiated at the healing mass following the service. Photos by Miriam Rosenberg

  • A healing mass was held at St. Mary Star of the Sea Church on June 22 for Police Officer Thomas Mitchell who was injured in a car accident as he and his partner were responding to a robbery in progress in the early morning hours of May 26.
  • In addition to family and officers from the 101 precinct – including commanding officer Captain Walter Salowski and former executive officer Captain Woody Selover – the NYPD was represented at the mass by first deputy commissioner for the NYPD George Grasso and Chief of Patrol Nicholas Estavillo. Also attending were Councilman James Sanders, Jr. and firefighters from the FDNY.

    Members of the 101 Precinct exit St. Mary Star of the Sea Church after the service is concluded.Members of the 101 Precinct exit St. Mary Star of the Sea Church after the service is concluded. At the 101 Precinct Community Council Board Meeting last month Salowski spoke about the accident and Mitchell’s condition.

    “[Mitchell] and his partner were responding to a robbery in progress in the Beach 41st Street Houses,” said Salowski. “ It was a rainy night. They were traveling about 20 miles an hour. The car hydroplaned into a pole.

    Showing solidarity with their NYPD brothers and sisters, firefighters from the FDNY leave the church after the mass.Showing solidarity with their NYPD brothers and sisters, firefighters from the FDNY leave the church after the mass. “The prognosis is not good. It is a very serious injury to the spine.”

    At the time of the meeting on June 15, Salowski told community residents that Mitchell had “limited mobility in one hand and no feeling from the chest down.”

    The captain – who called Mitchell a fine young man, a good cop but an even better person – explained that Mitchell had already undergone several operations and more are on the way.

    Councilman James Sanders, Jr. offers his help to Officer Mitchell’s wife before leaving the grounds of St. Mary’s Church. Councilman James Sanders, Jr. offers his help to Officer Mitchell’s wife before leaving the grounds of St. Mary’s Church. According to a source familiar with the officer’s condition, not much has changed since June 15. Mitchell is currently in a rehabilitation center in West Orange, New Jersey. “The prognosis is undecided,” the source told The Wave. “It’s going to be a long recovery.”

    Mitchell’s partner Veronica Shultz, who was behind the wheel at the time of the accident, is recovering.

    “Her injuries are not as severe,” the same source said. Mitchell, who has a six-month-old daughter, has been with the 101 Precinct during his entire 10 years with the NYPD.

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