Jim Woods

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Alumni News
Reflections of the Past
And Today's Current News

Where the nonpolitical voice of our membership is heard
And old and new stories are told. 

Greetings from sunny Florida.  Normally I take this space to update our membership about my personal happenings in life and things I may do with other members of the Alumni.  This issue of the Newsletter is going to all Alumni of the Suffolk County Police Department regardless of whether or not you are a paid or non paying member.  The object of this issue is to reach out to our brothers and sisters who are not dues paying members, to have a 100 percent paid membership of all our retirees. I have been asked to express my feelings regarding this subject by our President and have addressed them elsewhere in this Newsletter.      

I thank all for reading and submitting your stories over the years, without your participation there would not be an Alumni Reflections.  I hope all non paying members will submit their membership invoice along with their 2015 dues in the self addressed envelope included with this newsletter.  And now on with this issues stories.

RICHARD ALLEN:  Dick was employed by Commercial Credit Co. before entering the Police Academy in 1962.  During his tenure in the Police Department he worked in many commands.  He started in the First Precinct, then to the Second, and then on to the Lab, as a Detective.  He then  made Sergeant, went to the Fifth, and then went back to the Second.  He remained there and made Lieutenant.  He was on the move again when he made Detective Lieutenant and went to the Arson Squad.  Dick  made Captain and went to the District Commanders Unit until he was transferred to the Marine Division.  He was on the move again and became a Deputy Inspector and  Executive Officer of the Fourth Precinct.  Dick was on his last move, was promoted to Inspector and assigned to the Chief of Patrol’s Office.  He then retired in 1992 after having more than thirty-seven years on the Police Department.  After retirement he moved out to the north fork to Peconic, Long Island.  He built his own home where he now lives with his wife, Diane, who is a retired Registered Nurse.  The Allens travel to Florida during the cold months and bring along their twenty-three foot boat.  They pick a different location each year in the Sunshine State for their vacation visits.  Dick and Diane have two children:  a son who is single and resides in upstate New York; and a daughter who is a Police Officer in the Southold Police Department and is married to Aidan, they have two children.  Dick said they also travel to Ireland to visit family.  Dick and Diane will be travelling with a group of thirteen family members to Ireland in the near future for a family gathering.  Thanks for your story Dick, you certainly had a rewarding career with the Department and are having a great time in retirement.

PHIL BONAMO:  Phil entered the Police Academy in 1965 after  spending four years in the Air Force and three years in college.  Upon graduation he was assigned to the Fifth Precinct for two years then transferred to the Third Precinct.  He spent about ten years at the Third until he transferred to the Planning Section and on to Communications where he retired in 1985.  Phil and his wife, Agnes, moved to New Smyrna Beach, Florida, soon after retirement.  He became a Probation Officer for two years and then went on to became a Licensed Private Detective.  His wife worked for Embry Riddle College for about ten years.  Both are now fully retired.  Phil likes to do gardening and raise vegetables in his spare time.  Phil and Agnes have one son, Phil Jr. who is married and has two children.  He is an attorney and had a private practice but now works for Rice and Rose located in Daytona Beach, he deals in criminal and family law.  Thanks for your story Phil.

JOSEPH FARNITANO:  Joe joined the Department in 1964 after spending time in the Air Force and Republic Aviation.  After the Academy he was assigned to the First Precinct and went on to the Sixth, the Fifth, Internal Affairs, and the Major Crime Bureau.  Along the way he picked up his Sergeant, Lieutenant, Captain, Detective Captain and Deputy Inspector shields before retiring in 1986 from his final command, Major Crime Bureau.  When Joe initially retired, he and his wife, Patricia, moved to Hartwell, Georgia.  He worked as a staff writer for the local newspaper.  After a few years with the paper he became the Hart County Solid Waste Manager where he oversaw the implementation of a modern waste disposal system.  He finally retired for good in 1997 and moved to Wilmington, North Carolina, in 2001.  This past year he moved to Rock Hill, South Carolina.  Joe and Patricia raised five children, who gave them fourteen grandchildren, including one great-grandchild.  Their oldest daughter, Patricia, is a nurse, is married, and presently a stay at home mom with three boys, she lives in Tucson, Arizona; Tom lives in Wilmington, North Carolina, and is an account executive with a company that offers state of the art 911 systems; Chris is a family doctor on the staff of his county hospital in Martinez, California; Mike is a senior nuclear inspector with the Atomic Energy Agency, he is presently stationed at the agency headquarters in Vienna, Austria, is married and has three children; and last, but not least, is daughter Terri, she is married, has two children, and works as an Emergency Room nurse in Rock Hill, North Carolina.  Thanks for your story Joe.

Well, that’s about it for this issue.  Hopefully, when you get my telephone call, you will give me your story about life on the “job” and life in retirement.  Until then, KEEP BEATING THE SYSTEM,

Jim Woods,
4400 Flexer Drive
Hernando Beach, Florida  34607 352-596-9003


2702 Regular Retiree Members (1105 dues paying) +
18 Associate members (P.D. Civilian Retiree)+
28 Taps Spouse members+
648 Taps members


NY 1772  FL 509     AL 7  AR 1  AZ 27

CA 10  CO 3   CT 6  DE 2  GA 21

HI 2              ID 2  IL 1  IN 1              KY 1

MA 7   MD 6  ME 4  MO 1  MT 1

NC 83  ND 1  NE 1  NH 8  NJ 3

NM 2   NV 29  OH 3  OK 1  OR 3

PA 35  SC 46  TN 13  TX 11  UT 1

VA 45  VT 6  WA 1  WV 7  WY 1


An open letter to all non dues paying Alumni.

The time is February 1990.  A group of retirees headed up by Jack Scott formed a board of directors and started the Alumni Association.  It was originally  based in Florida but is a nationwide organization. We

published our first edition of the newsletter.  The newsletter was sent to over 600 paid subscribers out of about 1,200 retirees.  The cover page shows three Suffolk County Police Officers pushing on the world with the inscription, “HELP US GET THE BALL ROLLING”.  Well, the organization did get rolling and things went very well for about ten to fifteen years.  Increased subscriptions (membership) to the newsletter more than doubled.  The first chapter was organized in Florida.  We had many volunteers helping run reunions along the East Coast from Florida to New York.  There have been several cruise reunions; we assisted at the yearly 10-28 picnics on the East Coast of Florida for many years; and now have taken over the responsibility of running it.  The Alumni is alive and running.  However, during the past ten years, we found that the newer retirees have not responded as eagerly.  To this point I would like to address your attention.

Retirements January through June, 2014, all ranks, show that more than fifty people retired.  Of that amount, five people joined the Alumni.  This is slightly less than 10% subscribing to the newsletter.  We do our best to inform new retirees of the only Suffolk County Police retiree’s organization which includes all ranks into one group, ALUMNI.  We have our quarterly newsletter, which keeps you informed of Department,

Hospitalization or Pension changes.  We include a $275.00 Life Insurance coverage.  We have a website which includes member services, upcoming events, and past editions of Reflections, just to name a few items you will find.  We have a Scholarship program for your children, grandchildren or great and step grandchildren.  We also have a  Data Base and a Telephone Number for any quick service you may need for direction or information.  This is all provided by your Board of Directors at NO COST TO THE ORGANIZATION, everyone is a volunteer.  Your dues cover all of these benefits.

I speak for myself at this point.  When I retired, there was a sense of comradeship between brother officers.  We enjoyed seeing each other at yearly gatherings.  Do you retirees, let’s say in the past ten to fifteen years, do you not have that comradeship?  Are you not curious about how your brother officers that you worked with for twenty years or more in our Department are doing?  That’s just what the Alumni organization is all about, one for all and all for one; with numbers we have power and a voice.  So what does this all mean?  For one and most importantly, we would like younger retirees no matter where you reside to step up to the plate and join the Alumni.  Support your organization.  We are known, we are organized, and we are solvent.  The

organization requires young blood to follow in our footsteps.  We need you to keep the Alumni alive and well with new ideas for the next generation of retirees.  Come on, join and step up, become involved, be a board member and bring your ideas to reality for your brother retirees.

Respectfully, and
Keep beating the system,
Jim Woods
Alumni Reflections


Roger LaRocco  Police Officer  First Precinct  August 3, 2014

Vincent Stona  Captain  Fifth Precinct  August 7, 2014

Anthony Laghezza  Detective  Homicide  August 29, 2014

David Daniel  Inspector  Fourth Precinct  September 3, 2014

Christopher Pumo  Police Officer  Communications Section  September 4, 2014

Richard Suess  Police Officer  Sixth Precinct  September 13, 2014

Barton Kaminskey  Detective  Second Squad  September 18, 2014

Joseph Mehler  Police Officer  Communications Section  September 20, 2014

Nathan Johnston  Detective Sergeant  Property Recovery Section  September 30, 2014

Albert Davies  Police Officer  Third Precinct  October 11, 2014