Memory of NYPD officer lives on at Westbury car show
A car show was held in Westbury Sunday to honor a late NYPD officer from Merrick and support a foundation that was created in his memory.
Officer Mike Geraldi was only 45 when he died of an aneurysm in 2020 while on duty. Prior to his death, the 16-year NYPD veteran dreamed of creating a foundation that helped children in need.
His widow Carmen decided to make Geraldi’s dream a reality by creating Mikey G's Embracing Wings Foundation. The nonprofit helps support law enforcement families who have a child or children with severe disabilities or medical illnesses.
"For instance, someone needs a wheelchair or pay a bill or something like that, they would come to us" said Enzo Tutino, the nonprofit's vice president.
"And if we can do that for a family or 10 families or more, you feel good. You feel good helping somebody," said the foundation's secretary Natalie Tierney.
Local businesses also helped by donating gift baskets to raise money through raffle tickets. The biggest raffle prize, however, was a 1996 Camaro that a close friend of Geraldi's donated.
Geraldi’s family and friends organized the car show. All the money raised at the event will help the foundation. Carmen Geraldi said the foundation is a way of turning her family’s pain into purpose.
“This is my way of keeping connected to him and carrying on his legacy of what he was all about and makes me feel closer to him,” she said. "I know he's smiling down on us, and I'm starting to get emotional, but I know he's proud. This is what he stood for. I feel like we are making his vision come alive."