Police organizations and officials announce fundraiser for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts

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Patrick Ryder, acting police commissioner of the Nassau County Police Department, and other officials spoke with reporters on Friday about an upcoming fundraiser for Hurricane Harvey victims. (Photo by Janelle Clausen)

Nassau County police unions and officials announced the start of a fundraiser to support first responders and victims hurt by Hurricane Harvey in Houston on Friday, recalling their own experiences with Superstorm Sandy.

Officials said that the fundraiser, taking place on Wednesday, Sept. 6 starting at 5:00 p.m. at Mulcahy’s Pub & Concert Hall in Wantagh, aims to raise enough money to help hurricane ravaged Houston. The base entry fee will be $20 and all money will go towards Harvey relief efforts.

“It’ll just be a time for people to get together and enjoy the evening, but remember it’s about Houston, and that’s what we’re here for,” Patrick Ryder, acting police commissioner of the Nassau County Police Department, said at a press conference.

This will add to the $25,000 pledged by the Police Benevolent Association, Sheriff’s Correction Officers Association and Nassau County Police Department Detectives Association, as well as another $15,000, Mulcahy’s owner John Murray said.

“With the addition of that $25,000, we’re at $40,000 right now, so we’re going to do better than $100,000,” Murray said.

Hurricane Harvey submerged Houston with trillions of gallons of rainwater – the equivalent of a year’s worth of rainfall – and so far has claimed 39 lives. While the extent of the damage is still being assessed, police noted that some experts predict Harvey could cost $190 billion, which is equal to the combined cost of Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy.

Speakers recalled how other people around the country rallied to help Superstorm Sandy first responders and survivors back in 2012, when flood waters, rain and high winds did billions of dollars of damage to the metropolitan area. As a result, they said they felt obligated to help.

“They were supportive us during Sandy, we’re going to be supportive of them during their struggles now,” Ryder said, noting that all are welcome to attend.

“Hopefully we’ll raise a lot of money, do the right thing, and for the people of Houston, we stand with you,” Ryder added.

County Executive Ed Mangano said this fundraiser builds upon widespread county efforts to help Texas. He noted that the county’s Office of Emergency Management offered coordination and services and has airlifted MREs and other supplies to the area.

He also highlighted item drives at various county parks like Eisenhower Park in Garden City, Christopher Morley Park in Roslyn Heights, Cedar Creek Park in Seaford and Grant Park in Hewlett.

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