The commanding officer of the Suffolk County Police Department's Second Precinct stepped down on Friday after 36 years of serving the county.

Edward Brady retired after almost six years leading the Huntington-based precinct and working across Suffolk County.

"It was a privilege to serve the people of Suffolk County," Brady said just hours before his retirement became official. "It's been a great career, I loved being a police officer and absolutely loved working for the Suffolk County Police Department."

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He started his career in 1979 in the Second Precinct and then went on to the Fourth Precinct in Smithtown in various positions and ranks, including sergeant. He was promoted to lieutenant and assigned to the Internal Affairs Bureau in Yaphank; he then served as a captain in the Sixth Precinct in Selden, then returned to Internal Affairs as a captain, followed by promotion to deputy inspector working in the First Precinct in West Babylon. He then served as the commanding officer of the property section in Yaphank.

He returned to the Second Precinct as executive officer and was promoted to inspector assigned to the chief of department's office. He attended the FBI National Academy in Quantico in fall 2009, and upon returning, was assigned to be the commanding officer of the Second Precinct.

"I've spent a good deal of my career in the Second Precinct and of course there were difficult times, tragic times but also lots of good times," Brady said. "There are a lot of good people in Huntington and Huntington Station, and I think we are making a difference."

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At a proclamation presentation to Brady last week, Town Supervisor Frank Petrone lauded him for his kindness and work as a dedicated public servant who was always willing to work out problems and issues.

"He served us during times that were rough, and he served us well during those times," Petrone said. "Always a gentleman, I have never heard this man say anything derogatory about an individual, I have never heard him raise his voice. I only heard him when we sat, heard him in terms of his willingness to work out a problem and an issue."

The incoming commander of the Second Precinct is Deputy Insp. Chris Hatton. He started with the department in September 1987. He has worked in the Third, Fourth and Sixth Precincts, Marine Bureau and Internal Affairs. He was most recently the executive officer of the Third Precinct.