SCRANTON — Fallen officers were remembered during a ceremony Monday in Scranton, the first since Patrolman John Wilding lost his life on the job joining 12 others who died in the line of duty over the 150 year history of the department. The Scranton Police Department and its larger family of law enforcement lost another officer since…
SCRANTON — Fallen officers were remembered during a ceremony Monday in Scranton, the first since Patrolman John Wilding lost his life on the job joining 12 others who died in the line of duty over the 150 year history of the department.
The Scranton Police Department and its larger family of law enforcement lost another officer since the last time they gathered like this.
During the annual Memorial Day Service at police headquarters on South Washington Avenue, one more name was added to the roll call.
Patrolman Wilding died in July after being hurt chasing robbery suspects on the city’s west side.
“This memorial service allows us the opportunity to reinforce that they will never be forgotten,” said Monsignor Thomas Mudlowney, a chaplain with Pennsylvania State Police.
Every day officers in Scranton pass by the memorial never really knowing the previous fallen officers on this list, but now Patrolman Wilding’s name is here and his loss is still very real
“It’s not like it’s somebody that was 20 years ago, 30 years ago, yes we do remember those officers, but being such a new officer on the job and losing him in such a tragic way, it really hits us hard,” said Scranton Police Lieutenant Leonard Namiotka.
Retired Scranton Police Sergeant Michael Cammerota choked back tears while reading Wilding’s name on the roll call.
“I’ve been reading the names for 10 years. And I didn’t think i’d have a problem but it must be some unknown deep down you feel the pain,” said Cammerota.
Wilding’s family was here but also, his larger family; the men and women of the city’s police force as well as other law enforcement agencies each one who knows the constant danger police face.
“It’s also a sad day that we have officers that have given their lives and that we’re going to remember them this way,” said Lt. Namiotka. “But we love the police support from the community it’s all about the community – we’re here for them, they’re here for us.”
Patrolman Wilding was 29 years old when he died leaving behind a wife and two children and the entire community he protected in his short career.