The Boston chapter of Brotherhood for the Fallen (BFTF), a national organization that provides support for families of police officers murdered in the line of duty, will host its 3rd annual fall fundraiser this Saturday (Nov. 16) from 7 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. at the IBEW Local 103 Hall on Freeport Street.
In addition to Boston, BFTF has chapters in New York, Fort Worth, Aurora, Dallas, and Chicago.
Boston police officer Patrick Munroe, who founded the Boston chapter two years ago, described how the organization has built a support network for fallen officers and their families that crosses state lines.
“When an officer is killed in the line of duty, we’ll send officers to the wake and funeral services,” said Munroe. “Each chapter sends an officer, and we assist with logistics for flights, funeral services, and also make a donation to the family.”
Munroe said the Boston chapter sent officers to nearly 70 funerals in the past year. After beginning with just four members, the organization has grown to include 540 officers today.
Munroe’s sense of duty comes from a personal vision for change: A close friend who was a NYPD officer was killed in the line of duty in 2007. Given that, he said, the recent murders of Sgt. Sean Gannon of the Yarmouth Police and Sgt. Michael Chesna of the Weymouth Police hit close to home. They also lent a sense of urgency and gravity to his work with BFTF, he added.
“It’s an important thing, especially now, that people need to realize that police officers are people too. They have families...a lot of times people see us as the first line of government, but they don’t see the story behind the person. It’s about not leaving families behind because it could be any one of us. We all know that.”
The yearly fundraiser at IBEW has done a lot to boost BFTF’s profile, said Munroe. Last year, Gov. Charlie Baker was in attendance, and this year, Boston Police Commissioner William Gross will serve as keynote speaker. At-large city councillor Annissa Essaibi-George, a supporter of the organization, will also be in attendance.
Price of admission to the event, which will also include a silent auction, raffles, food, a cash bar, and live music from Boston-based cover band Bearfight, is $40.
To purchase tickets, visit brotherhoodboston.org.