January 5, 2011 | 1 comment | 379 views
Conor McDonald graduates from NYPD academy
Call him officer.
Conor McDonald, son of Malverne Mayor Patricia McDonald and NYPD hero Det. Steven McDonald, graduated from the police academy on Dec. 27 — in spite of the blustering blizzard that hit the New York region that day.
The 23-year-old officer graduated in the top 10 percent of his class, which comprised some 1,150 recruits.
“We’re both very proud of him,” his mother said before handing over two camera memory cards filled with photos of the graduation, which was held at Madison Square Garden.
She and her husband were seated near the front of the venue, visible to the event’s speakers — including New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, both of who paid tribute to Steven during the ceremony.
Steven, 53, was shot in the neck and paralyzed while on duty in Central Park in 1986, when Conor was a mere 3-month-old fetus. Bloomberg called him an NYPD legend and Kelly thanked him for being an “outstanding advocate and spokesman for his fellow officers.”
Nearly a dozen family members and friends joined the McDonald family at the graduation ceremony to congratulate Conor and honor Steven.
“I didn’t think I’d get as emotional as I did, but I did,” Mayor McDonald said, “you know, seeing him in his uniform and all.”
She said her son, a Boston College graduate with a love for volunteering, worked incredibly hard throughout the last six months at the academy.
“I didn’t have to push him at all,” she added. “It’s really nice to see, when somebody wants something, how hard they work. When you see your child doing something they enjoy and they like — it’s great.”
Conor’s first assignment was to join the other recruits in Times Square for the big New Year’s Eve celebration. The recruits assisted veteran officers and boosted security at the annual event, for which hundreds of thousands of people came out.