EAST HANOVER, NJ – Surrounded by fellow officers, town and county officials, family and friends, East Hanover Police Chief Stanley Hansen took his last walk out of the police department as chief Oct. 31 to the sound of the traditional bagpipes.

East Hanover Mayor Joseph Pannullo was by Hansen’s side. “Today is a day of two feelings," Pannullo said. "A day of happiness for the chief; someone who put in 43 years and has done a great job for the people of East Hanover is retiring and with the grace of God is retiring healthy. But it is also a sad day for the people of East Hanover and personally for myself."

The mayor said that during the past 21 years he's been in office he came to know Hansen on a personal basis. "No truer person are you ever going to meet in your life than Stan Hansen," Pannullo said. "Stan lead our police department to the best police department in the State of New Jersey … I wish you a happy and healthy retirement."

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Lt. Christopher Cannizzo said Hansen had a 43-year career as a police officer. "Stanley was hired in June 1973 and attained the rank of chief in January 1992," he said. "Stanley was responsible for hiring and promoting  100 percent of the current officers in the department." 

Emotions ran high and both Hansen and his family (including his wife Barbara and three daughters) were brought to tears many times during the short ceremony. Hansen thanked his many friends and fellow officers, as well as the mayors of East Hanover that have been with him throughout his career. He closed his remarks by thanking God.

“The most important three words I remember saying when I was sworn in as chief were ,'So Help Me God'," he said. "I think God has been with me all the way. He's opened many doors for me. He's given me lots of good friends and a lot of good co-workers and good experiences. I thank Him personally for keeping me safe bodily through all of these years. Keeping me out of harm's way when I was out on the road and I thank Him for being my guiding force all those years."

East Hanover Police Lt. Christopher Cannizzo will be sworn in Nov. 1 as the new chief.