Charity to Pay Off Slain Jersey City Cop’s Mortgage — and More
JERSEY CITY — The charity Tunnel2Towers said they will pay off the mortgage of the home belonging to the family of the police detective shot dead Tuesday by attackers who also killed three people in a Jewish market.
The nonprofit said its tribute to Detective Joseph Seals is first of their initiative to take care of the families of slain officers across the country.
"The Tunnel2Towers Foundation is going to pay your mortgage before Christmas so you never have to worry about your mortgage again," Frank Siller, the chairman and CEO of the charity, said at City Hall. Other police officers attended but Seals' wife and five children were not there.
A sanctioned GoFundMe fundraiser for Seals' family has also raised nearly $390,000 by Friday morning.
Seals' cousin, Justin Smith, said the officer's family were grateful.
"No amount of money will ever bring Joey back but to lift the burden of their mortgage off of Laura so she can grieve and raise their children means more to the family than anyone will ever know," Smith said.
Investigators say Seals was shot by David Anderson, 47, and Francine Graham, 50, at the Bay View Cemetery, where Seals had been conducting a homicide investigation.
Shortly thereafter, the pair drove a U-Haul van about a mile to JC Kosher Supermarket on Martin Luther King Boulevard and opened fire with rifles, killing Mindy Ferencz, 31, Douglas Miguel Rodriguez, 49, and Moshe Deutsch, 24, officials said.
Tunnel2Towers was created in memory of the CEO's brother, firefighter Steven Siller, who lost his life on 9/11 after running through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel with 60 pounds of gear strapped to his back.
The foundation noted that both Siller and Seals each had five children.
Siller also announced that the foundation will pay off the mortgage of every officer killed in the line of duty in the country.
"If someone is killed protecting the community and they are killed while protecting the community, we're going to take care of those families," Fred Siller said.
According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, so far this year there have been 118 line-of-duty deaths in the county. Of those, 46 cops have been killed by non-accidental gunfire, 13 have been struck by vehicles, 18 have died in car crashes, five were killed by vehicular assault, and three were killed in assaults.
Fulop would not elaborate on Seals' investigation at the homicide but said that Seals when the information comes out it will become clear that Seals was "one of the best police officers."