When NYPD officer Paul Tuozolo was shot and killed more than five years ago, his wife Lisa was shattered.
As a single mother of two boys aged 3 and 4, she could not imagine traveling with her children.
One of her first trips was to Lake George, courtesy of the nonprofit Law Enforcement Officers Weekend, which aims to provide travel and assistance to families of injured or fallen officers.
“I was scared,” she said. “It gave us a warm heart during our darkest days.”
The LEO Weekend organization has helped 42 families from 14 different states and 22 different law enforcement organizations over the years. This weekend, the group joins the city of Hempstead to hold a fundraiser to help would-be law enforcement officers escape after tragedies or catastrophic injuries on the job.
The fundraiser, scheduled for Saturday at 7pm at Mulcahy’s Pub and Concert Hall in Wantagh, will feature a concert by New York Irish band Shilelagh Law. Proceeds from food, drinks and a live auction will go towards a weekend trip to Lake George in June, a weekend trip to Long Beach in July and a weekend trip to Miami in October.
The event includes free parking at Wantagh train station and a free taxi service after the event, provided by All Island Taxi.
Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin said 500 law enforcement officers died across the country last year and the LEO weekend was a way for the city and community to give back.
“These men and women go out every day and put their lives on the line. They are wives, husbands and fathers and some don’t come home. Some make the ultimate sacrifice and that should never be forgotten,” Clavin said. “When you buy that ticket, it goes to something important — the fabric of society, law enforcement and families who have lost loved ones.”