Paralyzed Police Officer Offers Lesson In Faith & Forgiveness

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LINDEN — On Friday, Feb. 5, students of Sts. Mary and Elizabeth Academy in Linden learned a lesson about faith and forgiveness from former police officer Steven McDonald.

McDonald was shot three times at point blank range by a 15-year-old assailant, while on duty in Central Park in New York 25 years ago. The shooting left McDonald paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair. He explained to the children how faith and prayers kept him alive throughout this terrible ordeal. McDonald has met with the boy that shot him. He explained why he forgave the boy and how important it is to forgive those that may tease or insult you.


Police officers and firefighters were also present at McDonald’s presentation. He spoke to the children about how police and fireman put their lives on the line each and every day to protect the citizens and how hard the job really is.

McDonald now travels around the country speaking to children about the importance of faith and forgiveness. Father Benedict Worry, the pastor of St. Elizabeth’s Church, explained to the children to remember this day as it may be the only time in their lives they meet a real live hero.

Student Council officers Samantha Valderrama, Jade Weatherington, Dawn Gergich and Amanda Coccia pose for a photo with former police officer Steven McDonald. Photo courtesy of Sts. Mary and Elizabeth Academy

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