New York, NY – Retired New York Police Department (NYPD) Officer Richard Lopez died on July 9 after a long battle with 9/11-related cancer.
Officer Lopez, 52, served with NYPD for 20 years before he was forced to retired due to the cancer he developed from working for an extended period on the search and recovery efforts at the World Trade Center site after the 2001 terrorist attacks that rocked the nation, the Officer Down Memorial Page reported.
Seventy-two police officers from eight different agencies, and 343 New York City firefighters, were killed in the initial attacks and collapse of the North and South towers.
As the World Trade Center towers collapsed, a toxic cloud of dust that contained asbestos, cement, glass shards, and more than 91,000 liters of jet fuel enveloped lower Manhattan and the almost 70,000 first responders working on rescue and recovery efforts.
Since then, at least 137 more NYPD officers and 176 more firefighters have died from health complications related to 9/11-related illnesses, CNN reported in June.
Officer Lopez was a native of the island of Puerto Rico, and the NYPD Honor Guard traveled to Aguadilla to perform honors at his funeral there.
His family was presented with an NYPD flag in honor of Officer Lopez’s dedicated service to the department
A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Officer Lopez is survived by his wife and daughter.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of New York Police Officer Richard Lopez, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.