Officer Daniel Boyle’s legacy grew last month as a scholarship program created in his memory extended benefits to students in two additional schools for the current academic year.
Patrick Boyle, the father of the slain Philadelphia police officer and the president of the Daniel Boyle Scholarship Fund, awarded a combined $40,000 to four of the city’s parochial schools in support of students in need. Danny Boyle’s alma mater, Northeast-based Archbishop Ryan High School, received the largest sum, $27,000, while his father’s grade school, St. Veronica’s at Sixth and Tioga in North Philly, received $5,000.
And for the first time ever, the Boyle fund awarded grants to St. Christopher’s Parish School in Somerton and St. Gabriel’s Parish School at 29th and Dickinson in South Philly.
According to Patrick Boyle, St. Christopher’s is the family’s home parish and received $7,000 in scholarship money. St. Gabriel’s, meanwhile, is the home parish of many of the family’s longtime friends and supporters, Patrick Boyle said. It received $1,000.
Under the terms of the scholarship fund’s mission statement, the money will help offset tuition costs for students in need at the four schools. Individual beneficiaries are selected based on financial need, regardless of race, religion or national origin.
Since its 1991 founding, the scholarship fund has assisted almost 600 students with more than $500,000 in tuition payments. The fund is also helping four college students with their expenses. They attend the Aria Health School of Nursing, West Chester University, Alvernia University and the University of Pennsylvania.
“We’ve been [giving out] between $30,000 and $40,000 each year,” said Patrick Boyle, a retired Philadelphia police detective.
His son Danny followed in his footsteps to become a police officer in February 1990. One year later, on Feb. 4, 1991, the younger Boyle was working a midnight to 8 a.m. patrol in North Philly. The officer was alone and stopped a car that he suspected had been stolen.
A passenger emerged from the car with gun drawn and fired more than a dozen shots toward the officer. One of the bullets struck Boyle in the right temple. The officer died of his wounds two days later. He was 21.
That April, the Boyle family created the scholarship fund to memorialize Danny. Its annual fundraisers include a well-attended beef ‘n’ beer at Finnigan’s Wake. It’s scheduled for Feb. 17 this year from 3 to 7 p.m.
The fund also runs a May golf outing with an ad book and an annual raffle for a trip to Ireland.
Its corporate supporters include Waste Management, Universal Healthcare, Verizon and SKF Industries. Those firms use the state’s education tax credit program to give money to the scholarship program while earning corporate tax deductions.
Patrick Boyle hopes these partnerships will persevere for many years to come.
“I’ve been putting money aside every year in hope that after my time is up, to keep this going for a long, long time and to keep Danny’s memory alive.” ••
Reporter William Kenny can be reached at 215-354-3031 or firstname.lastname@example.org