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5k to honor Nassau cops killed this year

Michael Califano, left, and Geoffrey J. Breitkopf were

Michael Califano, left, and Geoffrey J. Breitkopf were among 100 Nassau County Police Academy recruits in the class of 1998. Both men died in the line of duty in 2011. Photo Credit: Handouts

For nearly two decades, there has been a police memorial race annually in Nassau to honor Officer Gary Farley, who died in March 1993 after struggling to subdue a suspect.

That event had marked Nassau’s last line-of-duty death — until earlier this year, when two Nassau County cops were killed on the job, within weeks of each other.

So organizers of what until last year had been called the Police Officer Gary Farley Memorial 5k Run have renamed the 5k run to honor the two cops slain this year, Officers Michael J. Califano (above, left) and Geoffrey J. Breitkopf (above, right).

The race, now called the NCPD Police Officer Memorial Run, will take place Saturday at 9 a.m. at Cedar Creek Park in Wantagh. Participants can register on race day or via nprunclub.org.

The entry fee is $22, and proceeds will go to scholarship funds in the officers’ names.

Highway Patrolman Califano, 44, became the 16th Nassau County police officer killed in the line of duty. He died during a traffic stop after a flatbed truck struck his patrol car on the Long Island Expressway in February. About five weeks later, Breitkopf, 40, a plainclothes special operations officer, became the 17th victim when he was killed by another officer in an accidental shooting.

The 15th was Farley, 36. He died after trying to arrest a Massapequa man in a domestic dispute. Farley, of the Seventh Precinct, was punched in the chest by the man and died soon thereafter.

 

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