Per Town of New Castle:
The Town of New Castle is holding a “A Community Gathering in a Time of Grief and Sadness” on Monday, July 11th, 6 p.m., at the Gazebo in downtown Chappaqua.This community gathering is open to all ages. Members of the New Castle police force will be on hand. It’s a great opportunity for adults and children to thank them personally for all they do.
Those taking part in the ceremony include New Castle Town Supervisor Rob Greenstein, New Castle Chief of Police Charles Ferry. Police Officer Chad Golanec, President of the New Castle Police Benevolent Association, Rev. Dr. Martha R. Jacobs, Senior Minister of the First Congregational Church of Chappaqua, Rabbi Jonathan Jaffe of Temple Beth El of Northern Westchester and Khusro Elley of the Upper Westchester Muslim Society.
The Emerald Society Bag Pipes Band will play Amazing Grace.
New Castle Supervisor Rob Greenstein stated “Once again, we will come together to mourn the tragic loss of life – the most police officers killed in the line of duty since 9/11. Americans of all races and all backgrounds are outraged by police misconduct. It’s unacceptable. When one of us is victimized we all suffer. Americans of all races and all backgrounds are also outraged when police officers sworn to uphold the law, protecting those who want to exercise their right to free speech, are murdered. Many members of the New Castle police force will be on hand. Let’s use this opportunity to thank them for all they do. They are members of our community and they risk their lives protecting us. They deserve our thanks.”
Rev. Dr. Martha R. Jacobs, Senior Minister of the First Congregational Church of Chappaqua, stated “as I look back on this past week, a question has arisen from my heart: How are we to make sense of this seeming loss of the value of human lives? There has been so much killing and mistrust and distrust in our country over the past year. This past month alone is a painful but important reminder that every single life matters. Our Christian tradition reminds us that we are to love our neighbor, even if that person is our enemy. Sometimes that is the most difficult commandment to live up to, and yet, we are to embrace all people, even those with whom we disagree, even those who would not welcome us to their table. We must and do welcome them to ours. We are to find ways to reconcile with those with whom we disagree – not through hatred and violence, but through love. In the end, love must overcome hate. Our faith requires no less from us”.
Rabbi Jonathan Jaffe of Temple Beth El of Northern Westchester, stated “this Monday night, the entire New Castle community will gather to share our feelings of grief and anxiety while communicating our mutual support and interdependence. We will express our appreciation for the brave individuals who dedicate their lives to law enforcement and to sustaining peace and security on our streets. At the same time, we will advocate for justice and the right of each human being to receive due process and a fair hearing under the law, no matter their ethnicity or background. Most importantly, we will speak to the common bonds which weave us together as a society, no matter the particular qualities that may distinguish us from one another. Together, we may communicate that even though we are fortunate enough to live in a peaceful and secure environment, our hearts are torn by the images of violence, distrust and anger which have recently roiled our nation and we are ultimately inspired towards action.”
Khusro Elley, a trustee at the Upper Westchester Muslim Society, stated “The violence that has taken place over the last few days in particular is alarming. Police officers frequently are called to handle the most volatile, life-threatening and most dangerous situations, often being the shield between a hostile and violent individual and would-be innocent victims. These public servants are a vital part of our civil society, and deserve our trust and respect. Certainly there are those officers who may abuse their positions of authority; however there are many more who do not. We must be careful not to assume that all law enforcement officers are trigger-happy. We are outraged over the unneccesary killing of African American men and women by law enforcement.. We understand the insurmountable pain this causes families and communities but we also understand that violence and retaliation is not the solution, The time is now to come together in unity and dialogue as police and communities and to ponder over how we can bring this unending spiral of violence to an end.”