Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch, whose fiery criticism of Mayor Bill de Blasio has made headlines in recent weeks, issued a softer message of thanks on Sunday to New Yorkers who support the NYPD.
Lynch’s office sent out his statement a day after Officer Rafael Ramos was laid to rest, and a week after Ramos and his partner, Wenjian Liu, were gunned down in Brooklyn.
“Those of us who wear the blue of the NYPD have experienced love, support and respect in many forms from people all over the nation, but none mean more to us than the slight smile and nod of the head we have been receiving from New Yorkers as we patrol our city’s streets doing the job we love,” Lynch said. “To those who demonstrate their support … we say thank you, it means a great deal to us.”
Lynch also thanked those who have made donations to the fallen officers’ families, and left flowers and candles at the memorial.
“The acts of kindness, both small and grand, and the appreciation from those that we risk our lives to protect is a clear indication that the lives and deaths of police officers Ramos and Liu had and will have great meaning,” Lynch said.
This is Lynch’s first public statement since Police Commissioner Bill Bratton asked union leaders to back off of rhetoric until after the funerals of officers Ramos and Liu. After the shootings on Dec. 20, Lynch and other officers turned their backs on de Blasio as he arrived at Woodhull Hospital, and Lynch said the mayor had blood on his hands for the officers’ deaths because he allowed the protests to take place.