September 2017

In this issue:

Meet Gavin Torabi, the man with his team that fed 101,200 meals To HPD officers and first responders all over Houston

Tom Kennedy

The deep, deep flood waters of Harvey brought to mind the Old Testament story of Noah and the ark for many Houstonians involved in the elaborate recovery process. Another ancient account – this one from the New Testament – also emerged. Across a wide field Jesus Christ was speaking to 5,000 men but had no Read More Read more

Subway drives its portable, storable sandwich delivery Truck to HPOU, provides thousands free to officers!

Tom Kennedy

If one had to guess the favorite go-to sandwich house in Houston – and practically everywhere else – it would be Subway! The nationwide sandwich chain answered the early bell to help Hurricane Harvey-ravaged Houston and the Texas Gulf Coast in the best way possible – providing free Subways to every first responder in sight. Read More Read more

God brought Trinity Lutheran official to the Union, resulting in an effective distribution plan for all

Tom Kennedy

The people and entities with the heavy hands always seem to get things done quickly and effectively. It turns out that the heavy hands in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey were gentle extensions of open arms. During the recent crisis recovery mode, the Houston Police Officers Union worked very closely with members of the nearby Read More Read more

Los Angeles School Police Department officers Show HPD they care with $7,850 check delivery

Tom Kennedy

It should be fairly safe to believe few HPD officers had ever heard of the Los Angeles School Police Department until the officers in that 400-member agency showed how much they cared for their brothers and sisters in water-logged Houston. They realized that HPD officers and their families would be devastated in the water and Read More Read more

HPD had 516 ‘visiting patrol officers’ Lending a hand during Harvey aftermath

Tom Kennedy

Members of the blue family showed up from far and wide in the wake of the flood waters of Hurricane Harvey. The HPD record showed 516 officers from 28 outside law enforcement agencies came to Houston to help out on patrol beats. Capt. Bryan Bennett of the Auto Theft Division said these numbers are conservative Read More Read more

HPOU Board calls off 2017 family picnic Due to Hurricane Harvey damage to venue

Tom Kennedy

Hurricane Harvey left an untold number of disappointments and tragedies in its wake. Now the HPOU/First Responders Benefit Trust Family Picnic must be added to that seemingly endless list. Harvey inflicted enough damage to the traditional picnic venue, the Farm and Ranch Club, 1 Abercrombie Dr. to prompt the postponement decision by the Union Board Read More Read more

HPD Sgt. Steve Perez: Dignitaries and HPD friends pay their deepest respects To an old school sergeant, family man and ‘a Texas hero’

Tom Kennedy

Gov. Greg Abbott described HPD Sgt. Steve Perez as “the epitome of a true Texas hero.” Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner spoke from his heart when he told almost 2,000 mourners at Perez’ Sept. 13 memorial service, “He ran his race. He was faithful, and he finished his course.” Police Chief Art Acevedo, the leader who Read More Read more

‘Storm Debris’ may have tendency to clog officers’ minds

Lisa Garmezy

Before I get to Hurricane Harvey, I would like to review some feedback about a recent column on adolescent suicide. Readers brought “detergent suicide” to my attention. An internet search and common household chemicals are all that a troubled individual needs to produce gas that is very lethal in a small space such as a Read More Read more

Fallen Heroes: Officer R. Q. Wells

Nelson Zoch

JUNE 30, 1927 Early in the morning hours of Saturday, July 30, 1927, Short Call Officers R.Q. Wells and M. A. Gresham were summoned to a call at the home of a W. A. Stallings, who had been found dead at his home from a gunshot wound. With Officer Wells driving, the officers approached the Read More Read more

Work of Special Victims Officer Baker removes serial exposer from the streets of Houston

Tom Kennedy

The August HPOU Investigator of the Month award went to Officer Kamesha Baker of the Adult Sex Crimes Unit of the Special Victims Division. The Union presented the honor at the August general membership meeting. Baker’s work was detailed at the presentation event, thusly: Last July Baker began a multi-month investigation on a serial exposer Read More Read more

Purser goes above and beyond, earns HPOU Patrol Officer of Month honor

Tom Kennedy

The HPOU selected Officer Brent Purser as the Patrol Officer of the Month in the August general membership meeting. HPOU’s    Luis Menendez-Sierra presented Purser the monthly award and quoted from a Channel 13 story to demonstrate why the officer deserved the honor. Madison Williams and her four-year-old daughter were locked in a motel bathroom and Read More Read more

The sturdy and staunch Blue Family makes sure Kevin Will Jr.’s first day of school is unforgettable

Tom Kennedy

There are very few things that are more important to a parent or child than the first day of school. Every parent wants to make that day as memorable as possible for that young boy or girl as they start that new adventure. Alisha Will was no different. As you all know, Kevin Will tragically Read More Read more

Before the storm one innocent Northside family Saw their home destroyed by suicidal truck driver

Tom Kennedy

This story happened before the storm. Yet it stands as another example of how HPD officers have close connections with the communities they serve, whether in Northeast, Southwest or in any other quadrant or patrol niche in the big city they serve. The episode started the morning of July 10 with an unexpected bang! Alex Read More Read more

HPOU members to elect president, 3rd vice president, secretary and board representatives for odd-numbered seats

Tom Kennedy

Balloting for this year’s election of the HPOU president, 3rd vice president, secretary and board members with odd-numbered board seats begins Oct. 6. The Union announced the full schedule for this year’s election procedures with filing for these positions to begin at 8 a.m. Sept. 1. The filing deadline is 10 a.m., Oct. 5 with Read More Read more

Plan now to attend the first annual ATO’s Top Cop Gala in February

Tom Kennedy

After several years of planning Assist the Officer Foundation (ATO) with the support of the Houston Police Officers Union and First Responders Benefit Trust is happy to extend to each of you an opportunity to be a part of the first ATO Houston Top Cop Gala. Join us on Saturday Feb. 3, 2018 at the Read More Read more

Male and Female Officers Should Bone Up on Osteoporosis Now to Lessen the Risk in the Future, Kelsey-Seybold Doctor Says

Kelsey-Seybold Staff

Bones are growing, living tissue and undergo a continuous cycle of being lost and replaced. Losing too much or growing too little bone tissue can result in low bone mass, and increased risk or progression of osteoporosis. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, that is the case for about 54 million Americans today. “Osteoporosis causes Read More Read more

Obituaries of HPD Family Members

Tom Kennedy

BUSTAMANTE Mrs. Minerva E. Bustamante passed away on Wednesday, July 26, 2017, at the age of 90. She is the grandmother of Senior Police Service Officer Monica Flores, assigned to the Eastside Division. Services were held July 31 with burial in Hollywood Cemetery.   CARR Honorable Robert W. Carr passed away on Friday, September 1, Read More Read more

Thank You Notes to the Houston Police Officers Union

Tom Kennedy

    HPOU, Thank you for the plant you sent to my mother’s service. I greatly appreciate your thoughts during our difficult time. Sincerely, Sgt. Jeff G. Herrera & Family And Pauline Garcia Gonzales Family   HPOU, Thank you all for the kind thoughts for us in our sorrow. They are greatly appreciated. Charlie Schmidt Read More Read more

HPOU/FSBT Family Picnic Cancelled

Tom Kennedy

BY NOW EVERYBODY IN THE GREATER HOUSTON area knows the term HOUSTON STRONG! They also know about the growing number of sacrifices we all must endure in order to keep on keeping on. Unfortunately, the Nov. 17 Family Picnic sponsored by the HPOU and First Responders Benefit Trust had to be cancelled. The HPOU Board Read More Read more

There was no Us-versus-Them in Harvey’s aftermath; There were communities of all shades and backgrounds helping HPD help them!

Tom Kennedy

LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS FROM ALL OVER THIS NATION can hear the loud voices of criticism from Chicago, Ferguson, Baltimore and many other places where racial incidents involving officers in blue sought to divide our country. Now those voices are effectively muted and nearly forgotten, left in the far corners of memory banks, while new memories Read More Read more