Nassau first responders wear pink patches for Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Police on Long Island and across the nation are wearing pink patches this month in honor of the lives lost to breast cancer.
The Pink Patch Project is a national campaign coordinated by first responders for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Sgt. Gerry Lennon of Adelphi University’s Public Safety Department says his mother is a survivor of breast cancer, but his sister died of the disease.
“And for some reason my sister was always afraid of mammograms so she would always put them off,” Lennon says. “And at the end, she had stated that she wished she had gone for the mammogram. So, I just think awareness is huge.”
Awareness is the first step, according to Reyna Machado, executive director of the Adelphi NY State Breast Cancer Hotline and Support Program, which is housed on the Adelphi campus.
“That awareness leads to action and we know early detection saves lives,” Machado says.
Adelphi University public safety officers are also accepting donations for their breast cancer patches. All of the money goes to the New York State Breast Cancer Program.
In addition to the officers at Adelphi, the Mineola Fire Department and Floral Park Police Department are also wearing pink patches.
Lt. William Doherty of the Floral Park Police Department said he started the pink patches three years ago as a way to celebrate his sister who survived breast cancer.
He says the patches have an impact on the neighborhood that can be emotional.
“Somebody who has been touched with breast cancer will come up and hug them,” Doherty says. “And we love that.”
Anyone struggling with the disease can call the Adelphi New York Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline at 800-877-8077.