GOOD NEWS NYPD Holds Funeral Service for Retired Detective, WWII Vet With No Next of Kin
NYPD members gathered in Queens to give a final salute to a retired detective who was a World War II veteran.
Members of the 113th Precinct organized the funeral for 95-year-old William Brown upon discovering that he had no surviving next of kin.
According to the Daily News, officers first became aware of Brown after responding to a 311 call from a concerned neighbor.
They found out he was living alone in an apartment with no heat. They also learned that not only was he a retired detective, he was also a World War II veteran who had fought in the 369th Infantry Regiment known as the Harlem Hellfighters.
Officers worked with a local church to get his heat turned back on. They helped him with his benefits, registered him with the VA, and even brought him to his doctor's appointments.
Detective Tanya Duhaney, a community affairs officer with the precinct, said she visited him almost every Sunday.
On May 20, he died of heart ailments. Duhaney discovered that no one claimed his body and there was no next of kin. He was slated to be buried in a potter's field.
“That’s when we said we’ll make sure that he’s treated right,” Deputy Inspector Frederick Grover said.
They held a wake and funeral service for him Thursday, and he was buried at a Long Island cemetery.
The officers remember him as a calm and mischievously funny man who loved telling stories.
Grover said he received department honors for rescuing a woman and her child from a burning building in 1960, busting a man with a loaded gun in 1962, and arresting a burglar armed with a knife in 1964. He retired in 1968 a Detective after 20 years with the NYPD.