Fallen Officers

 "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." -- John 15:13

Patrolman James A. Mynderse  End of Watch, March 31, 1900        Shield # 21

Born: 1857 

Appointed: 1893 

Died: March 31, 1900

In the late 1800s, the train traffic that flowed through Schenectady crossed State Street exactly where it does today -- between Broadway and Erie Boulevard, then the Erie Canal. On March 31, 1900, Patrolman Mynderse was stationed at a walking post near the crossing. An Albany woman shopping in the downtown area was walking across the multi-track street level train crossing when two trains approached from opposite directions. The woman stopped in the middle of the tracks, paralyzed with fear. Ptl. Mynderse ran from his post, pushing the woman to safety just before a train would have struck her. Ptl Mynderse narrowly avoided being struck by the train himself; however, he stepped backwards too far into the second set of tracks, and directly into the path of the other oncoming train.

William Campbell, the Chief of Police, was quoted as saying of Ptl. Mynderse, "Fearless in the performance of his duties, he never thought of danger." Shocked and horrified by the tragic death of Ptl. Mynderse, the citizens, newspapers and Common Council demanded that the railroad elevate its train tracks in the city. Ptl. Mynderse was posthumously honored with the naming of a new city street after him. Mynderse Street was located off State Street in a new section of the city that was expanding eastward from downtown.''

Captain Albert L. Youmans  End of Watch, November 28, 1924      Shield # 21

Born: 1877

Appointed: 1902

Died: November 28, 1924

Patrolman Frank A. Quinlivan  End of Watch, September 15, 1925   Shield # 86

Born: 1895 

Appointed: 1917 

Died: September 15, 1925

On the morning of September 15, 1925, Patrolman Quinlivan was investigating the sighting of four gunmen who has committed an armed robbery of the Marwell House nightclub in South Schenectady. The investigation led him to the Colonie Inn on Albany Road where the officer interrupted the bandits as they were dividing their loot at a back table. The four had been on a robbery spree, hitting nightclubs and hijacking liquor shipments. Ptl. Quinlivan was mortally wounded by one of the four bandits who fired at him from a gun concealed under the table. The dying officer was able to shoot and kill the robber. The dead man was a well-known gangster and gunman who was the prime suspect in the murder of Captain Youmans and the fatal wounding of Ptl. Flynn, as well as a suspect in the murder of Sergeant Thomas P. Oates of the Troy, NY, Police Department.

Patrolman John R. Flynn  End of Watch, August 28, 1934                 Shield # 71

Born: 1898 

Appointed: 1922 

Died: August 28, 1934

On the evening of November 28, 1924, the day after Thanksgiving, an assassin shot both Captain Youmans and Patrolman John Flynn as they were walking on Edison Avenue near the elevated railroad bridge. The 12-gauge shotgun blast fatally wounded Capt. Youmans and injured Ptl. Flynn. Despite his injuries, Ptl. Flynn carried the Captain back to the 2nd Precinct at the intersection of Broadway and Edison Avenue where he summoned help. For the next ten years Ptl. Flynn worked for the department; however the wounds he received that day continued to plague him until he finally succumbed to complications in 1934. The "Roaring Twenties" were in full swing, and, like many other urban areas in the country, Schenectady had problems with prohibition. Capt. Youmans was known as a champion in the fight against speakeasies, gambling houses and other vice prevalent in that era.

Patrolman John C. Sherman End of Watch, August 22, 1941           Shield #118

Born: 1896 

Appointed: 1924 

Died: August 22, 1941

While responding to a call of a house fire, the tires of Patrolman Sherman's car were caught between the trolley car rails on State Street, causing it to flip over. Ptl. Sherman died as a result of his injuries.

Patrolman William J. Hickey  End of Watch, July 17, 1949                 Shield #78

Born: 1925

Appointed: 1948

Died: June 17, 1949

Patrolman Hickey was a motorcycle officer assigned to downtown Schenectady. On June 17, 1949, Ptl. Hickey was on routine patrol crossing the intersection of Union and Barrett Streets. A visitor to Schenectady did not notice the red traffic light, hitting the motorcycle and dragging Ptl. Hickey into the curb and up onto the sidewalk. Only 24 years old, Ptl. Hickey had been described as one of the most promising young officers in the department.

Lieutenant John J. Cummings  End of Watch, May 18, 1953 

Born: 1902 

Appointed: April 10, 1925 

Died: May 18, 1953

At approximately 3:00 a.m. on May 18, 1953, a young soldier home on leave from the Army stole a car from a dealership on Nott Terrace. The theft had been detected, and the stolen vehicle was spotted and pursued. Lieutenant Cummings was riding in a vehicle driven by Patrolman Cliff Wood, Sr., when he was stricken with a heart attack. Lt. Cummings was immediately brought to the nearest medical facility, St. Clare's Hospital Emergency Room, which had not yet officially opened to the public. Doctors there worked on the Lieutenant, and was pronounced dead at 5:30 a.m., shortly after arriving at the hospital.

Patrolman William A. Koenige  End of Watch, February 12, 1979                 Shield #109

Born: 1944

Appointed: 1968 

Died: February 12, 1979

Patrolman William Koenige, a ten-year veteran, was shot and killed while responding to a report of a domestic disturbance involving weapons at 2333 hours, just 27 minutes from the end of his shift for the night. A man had gone to his ex-girlfriend's home armed with a .30 caliber carbine, a .357 caliber handgun, and a 9 mm handgun. After the man got to the woman's house he found that she was not there and fired six rounds through the door. Patrolman Koenige and another officer were dispatched to the scene, but Patrolman Koenige was the first to arrive. As he climbed the stairs to the third floor apartment the man shot him at point-blank range.
The suspect then took his own life.

Patrolman Eric J. Verteramo  End of Watch, April 11, 2004             Shield # 91 

Born: 1973 

Appointed: 1998 

Died: April 11, 2004

During the early evening hours of April 11, 2004, Officer Verteramo responded from Bellevue to a motorcycle - pedestrian accident at State and Furman Streets. While northbound on Broadway, about 500 feet north of Lower Broadway, Officer Verteramo failed to negotiate a curve and struck a utility pole across from 824 Broadway. Schenectady Police and Fire Communications received several calls about the crash, and dispatched police and rescue personnel to the scene. Officer Verteramo was extricated from the vehicle by Schenectady Fire Department personnel and rushed to Ellis Hospital with head and upper-body trauma. A short time later, Officer Verteramo was airlifted by Med Flight to Albany Medical Center for further treatment. Later that evening, Officer Verteramo died from his injuries.