BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Buffalo Police Officer Patricia "Patty" Parete was a hero, and Wednesday western New York will honor her . A fighter to the end, Officer Parete passed away Saturday, more than six years after being shot and paralyzed in the line of duty.
She will be remembered for her indomitable spirit and enduring legacy. Parete joined the Buffalo Police force in 2001 and started in E District. According to Lieutenant John King, she wasn't just a fast learner and good officer, but a great person as well.
In 2006, King said, "She just forthright, honest, compassionate. Got all the qualities. She's a great individual. A great human being."
Parete's training officer described Patty's compassion for people.
"We'd leave calls and she'd say is that it? Is there anything else we can do for these people? Just real concerned," Linda Perez Yount explained, in 2006.
The incident, that eventually cost Parete her life, happened on December 5th, 2006, when she and her partner Carl Andolina were shot after responding to a fight call outside a downtown mini mart.
One of the bullets lodged near her spine. She was left partially paralyzed by her injuries and she endured a difficult road to recovery, that had her spending months in the hospital and then to New Jersey for rehab.
Buffalo PBA President Lt. James Panus said, "What happened was a tragedy then, 'til now. We all had a sense of helplessness about it, and the injury that put Patty in that position, and her condition. That hurt us. And right now, her suffering is over."
Andolina, who was shot in the arm on that fateful night, issued a statement Tuesday that said in part, "She was and always will be an inspiration to everyone she touched." He said, "She was and always will be an inspiration to everyone she touched." He added, "May no one among us forget her service and sacrifice."
Police officers will start lining Delaware Avenue at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, for Officer Parete's funeral. Police will begin escorting her body from a South Buffalo Funeral Home at 10 a.m. Her funeral will begin at 11 a.m.
Funeral services will impact traffic in Buffalo. Delaware Avenue, between Virginia and West Tupper Streets will be closed to all traffic between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Wednesday.
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