2006-04-28 / Community

Rockaway's Bravest and Finest Saluted At Annual Luncheon

By Miriam Rosenberg Contributing Editor

Chamber president Lepore (center) joins in saluting the 101 Precinct's Cops of the Year Lt. Messina (Special Projects) and youth Officer Napolitano. Also pictured (far right) are 101 commanding officer, Deputy Inspector Salowski and Plummer. Chamber president Lepore (center) joins in saluting the 101 Precinct's Cops of the Year Lt. Messina (Special Projects) and youth Officer Napolitano. Also pictured (far right) are 101 commanding officer, Deputy Inspector Salowski and Plummer. The men and women who fight the fires, keep our streets safe and take us to the hospital in times of need were honored during the 2006 Bravest and Finest Awards Luncheon on April 20. The Rockaway Chamber of Commerce hosted the annual event, held at Russo's On The Bay, which honored police officers from the 100 and 101 Precincts and Transit District 23 and local members of the FDNY from emergency services and Battalion 47.

Officer Jackie Napolitano and Lt. Gary Messina of the 101 Precinct lead a parade of the Bravest and Finest Award honorees for 2006. Officer Jackie Napolitano and Lt. Gary Messina of the 101 Precinct lead a parade of the Bravest and Finest Award honorees for 2006. Captain Mark Watenberg, the commanding officer of Transit District 23, introduces honoree Officer Andrew Moreno. Of Moreno, who is with the Truancy Unit, Watenberg said, "[Moreno] makes a difference, on a regular basis, with children." Captain Mark Watenberg, the commanding officer of Transit District 23, introduces honoree Officer Andrew Moreno. Of Moreno, who is with the Truancy Unit, Watenberg said, "[Moreno] makes a difference, on a regular basis, with children." Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer and State Senator Malcolm Smith congratulate this year's honorees. Pheffer said the luncheon was "Our way of saying thank you to those who rush into burning buildings, are on the streets and are taking people to the hospital." Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer and State Senator Malcolm Smith congratulate this year's honorees. Pheffer said the luncheon was "Our way of saying thank you to those who rush into burning buildings, are on the streets and are taking people to the hospital." An honor guard leads the colors before the awards ceremony began. Looking on is the chamber's board secretary Linda Plummer. An honor guard leads the colors before the awards ceremony began. Looking on is the chamber's board secretary Linda Plummer. Chief Robert Sweeney (left) with the officers of Battalion 47, who went to New Orleans - after Hurricane Katrina - to help local firefighters there. Also pictured are Lepore and Plummer. Photos by Miriam Rosenberg Chief Robert Sweeney (left) with the officers of Battalion 47, who went to New Orleans - after Hurricane Katrina - to help local firefighters there. Also pictured are Lepore and Plummer. Photos by Miriam Rosenberg 1969 New York Met Ed Kranepool, NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly, chamber executive director Joanie Omeste, State Senator Malcolm Smith, '69 Met Art Shamsky and chamber president John Lepore get together for a photo during the luncheon. 1969 New York Met Ed Kranepool, NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly, chamber executive director Joanie Omeste, State Senator Malcolm Smith, '69 Met Art Shamsky and chamber president John Lepore get together for a photo during the luncheon. NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly sits with officers of the 100 and 101 Precincts, along with those of Transit District 23, watching the opening ceremony. In his remarks to the crowd Kelly said the gathering represented "the hard, effective work by police officers in the Rockaways." NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly sits with officers of the 100 and 101 Precincts, along with those of Transit District 23, watching the opening ceremony. In his remarks to the crowd Kelly said the gathering represented "the hard, effective work by police officers in the Rockaways." John Lepore, the president of the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce, said of the honorees: "We're honoring those who make the extraordinary ordinary." John Lepore, the president of the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce, said of the honorees: "We're honoring those who make the extraordinary ordinary." City Councilmen James Sanders, Jr. and Joseph Addabbo, Jr. with St. John's Episcopal Hospital's Eric Matza pose for a photo before the luncheon begins. City Councilmen James Sanders, Jr. and Joseph Addabbo, Jr. with St. John's Episcopal Hospital's Eric Matza pose for a photo before the luncheon begins. Special guests Art Shamsky and Ed Kranepool, of the World Champion 1969 New York Mets, salute Rockaway's bravest and finest. Shamsky said, "We are not heroes, we're just baseball players. You are the real heroes." Special guests Art Shamsky and Ed Kranepool, of the World Champion 1969 New York Mets, salute Rockaway's bravest and finest. Shamsky said, "We are not heroes, we're just baseball players. You are the real heroes." 100 Precinct Cops of the Year Officers (left to right) John Purcell and Dennis Darcy after receiving their awards with Lepore, 100 Precinct commanding officer Captain Charles Neacy and Plummer. 100 Precinct Cops of the Year Officers (left to right) John Purcell and Dennis Darcy after receiving their awards with Lepore, 100 Precinct commanding officer Captain Charles Neacy and Plummer.

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