Holy Family University hosted its seventh annual Blue Mass to honor fallen police and firefighters and those who have supported them.
Joe McBride, a retired police sergeant and director of security at Holy Family, and the Rev. James MacNew, campus minister, established the Mass, which is traditionally held in conjunction with National Police Week.
MacNew celebrated the Mass on May 10 in Holy Family’s gym. He was assisted by the Revs. Mark Hunt, religion professor at Holy Family, and Steve Wetzel, pastor at St. Joachim, and Joe Cella, chaplain for Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5.
As guests sang Amazing Grace, McBride read the names of the individuals being specially remembered at the Mass: fallen Philadelphia police officers Brian Lorenzo and Moses Walker; murdered Plymouth Township police officer Brad Fox; MIT police officer Sean Collier, shot to death, allegedly by the Boston Marathon bombers; Philadelphia Fire Capt. Michael Goodwin, who died last month in a blaze in South Philadelphia; recently deceased Bishop Joseph McFadden, who celebrated two Blue Masses; Holy Family security officer Ed Nowakowski, a retired police corporal who died suddenly at 62; and Philadelphia police officers Milan Merke and Marc Brady, who died in vehicle accidents while off duty.
Among those in attendance were police Capt. Frank Bachmayer, the new commander of Northeast Detectives; FOP Lodge 5 president John McNesby; and city Managing Director Rich Negrin.
McBride, a member of Philadelphia Police Academy Class 213, welcomed members of the current Class 364 to the Mass. ••