Dun­dalk Po­lice hon­ored by Fa­tima Knights

The Dundalk Eagle - - FRONT PAGE - By NI­COLE RODMAN nrod­man@ches­pub.com

The siz­zle, smell and sight of burg­ers and dogs hit­ting a red-hot grill greeted Dun­dalk Precinct 12 po­lice of­fi­cers com­ing onto shift at the East­wood sta­tion on Mon­day.

Man­ning the grill were

mem­bers of the Our Lady of Fa­tima Knights of Colum­bus (KOC) Coun­cil #10137 based out of Our Lady of Fa­tima Church on East Pratt Street.

Each year on Sept. 11, Fa­tima KOC mem­bers show their ap­pre­ci­a­tion for lo­cal law en­force­ment by hold­ing a cook­out for first re­spon­ders. For the past 13 years, the group has held the event at the Bal­ti­more (City) Po­lice South­east­ern Dis­trict on East­ern Av­enue. With the new Dun­dalk precinct just down the road in East­wood, how­ever, the Knights de­cided to wel­come their new neigh­bors in grand style.

From now on, noted Grand Knight Au­gust “Buzzy” Stock­man, the Knights will host their Sept. 11 cook­out in the county on odd years and the city in even years.

For Stock­man and his fel­low Knights, the event is all about hon­or­ing those of­fi­cers who give so much to the com­mu­nity.

“We are a charitable or­ga­ni­za­tion who be­lieves in giv­ing back to the com­mu­nity,” Stock­man noted.

After the uproar over the mov­ing of the Dun­dalk precinct from Mer­ritt Boule­vard to the for­mer East­wood El­e­men­tary School last year, the Fa­tima KOC de­cided to show the Precinct 12 of­fi­cers how much they are ap­pre­ci­ated.

“They got a bit of bad press,” Stock­man ex­plained.

In an era in which of­fi­cers are un­der greater crit­i­cism and scru­tiny, Stock­man feels that such out­reach is more im­por­tant than ever be­fore.

“We feel po­lice are get­ting a bad rap, he noted, adding, “They put up with a lot.”

Mon­day’s cook­out fea­tured hot­dogs, ham­burg­ers and a va­ri­ety of sal­ads and sides for of­fi­cers (and lo­cal fire­fight­ers, who were also in­vited) to en­joy. Ac­cord­ing to Stock­man, both the turnout and the re­cep­tion were out­stand­ing.

“We’ve been com­pletely over­whelmed” by the of­fi­cers’ re­sponse, he ex­plained.

Stock­man and his Knights also took the op­por­tu­nity to present a cer­tifi­cate of ap­pre­ci­a­tion to Dun­dalk Precinct 12 Cap­tain Or­lando Lilly and his of­fi­cers for their ef­forts keep­ing the commu- nity and its res­i­dents safe.

In re­marks to those as­sem­bled, Cap­tain Lilly evoked the im­age of a three-legged stool.

With­out all three legs — in this case, com­mu­nity, gov­ern­ment and law en­force­ment — the stool is un­sta­ble and can­not stand.

Lilly ex­pressed his ap­pre­ci­a­tion for the Fa­tima Knights and all those com­mu­nity mem­bers who sup­port lo­cal law en­force­ment.

“I’m more grate­ful for the op­por­tu­nity to work with this com­mu­nity,” Lilly said, telling the Knights, “We don’t take what you did to­day lightly.”

For his part, Stock­man of­fered the KOC’s as­sis­tance to any­one who needs it across the com­mu­nity.

In ad­di­tion to their of­fi­cer out­reach pro­gram, the Fa­tima Knights col­lect win­ter coats for chil­dren in need and host an an­nual Toot­sie Roll drive that ben­e­fits chil­dren with spe­cial needs.

They also raise funds to pur­chase sono­gram ma­chines for cri­sis preg­nancy cen­ters as part of a statewide KOC pro­gram.

Cur­rently, the Knights are sell­ing raf­fle tick­ets for the chance to win a new Mus­tang ve­hi­cle. Pro­ceeds ben­e­fit the coun­cil’s char­ity and schol­ar­ship pro­grams.

For more in­for­ma­tion on Our Lady of Fa­tima Knights of Colum­bus Coun­cil #10137, call Grand Knight Au­gust “Buzzy” Stock­man at 443-690-2452, Dis­trict Deputy Jim Bock­lage at 443-683-9498 or Deputy Grand Knight Chris Stach­lin­ski at 443-928-5865.

PHOTO BY NI­COLE RODMAN

Dun­dalk Precinct 12 Po­lice Cap­tain Or­lando Lilly (far left), shook hands with Our Lady of Fa­tima Knights of Colum­bus Grand Knight Buzzy Stock­man as Lilly and his of­fi­cers ac­cepted a cer­tifi­cate of ap­pre­ci­a­tion on Mon­day.

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