SUFFERN, N.Y. -- The grieving family of a Rockland native killed in the Orlando nightclub massacre, which was helped in its time of need by Suffern police Chief Clarke Osborn, returned the favor Friday, according to a report by lohud.com.
Shane Tomlinson, 33, grew up in Ramapo but moved to North Carolina while he was still in high school, according to multiple media reports.
His aunt and uncle, Regina and Stan Tomlinson, were friends of Osborn’s and he helped connect them to a charity that paid for the couple’s expenses when they traveled to Florida for their nephew’s funeral, the lohud.com report said.
Police departments all over the nation, including Suffern's, were reeling Friday, a day after 12 police officers were shot in Texas by a sniper purporting to hate whites.
The Tomlinsons, referencing the Dallas ambush, said such acts of violence underline the importance of kindness and people reaching out to each other during difficult times, the lohud.com story said. They presented the visibly moved Osborn with a plaque, a photo of their late nephew, and a framed T-shirt signed by family members, the lohud.com story said.
Meanwhile, Suffern Mayor Ed Markunas, who is a retired police officer, tweeted his condolences to the family and friends of the slain Dallas officers.
“Although their tours of duty have suddenly cease, we pray that perpetual light shine upon the souls of these brave officers,” Markunas’ message read.
The mayor reminded residents police officers “put their lives on the line every single day to protect and serves our communities across this great nation.”
The targeting of officers, Markunas said, is “totally intolerable!”
He ended his message with the words, “BLUE LIVES MATTER!,” in an apparent reference to Black Lives Matter, an activist movement launched in 2013 after the acquittal of a man who shot an unarmed black teenager in Florida. The movement campaigns against violence toward black people, but also addresses issues such as racial profiling and police brutality.
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