LIVINGSTON, NJ — The Livingston Police Department and longtime Livingston residents are mourning the loss of Corporal William J. Brennan, a 35-year veteran of the police force and 20-year Livingston Police Officer. Brennan passed away Sunday afternoon surrounded by family and friends.
Many who knew Brennan took to Facebook to share stories of the late cop and to send well wishes to Brennan’s loved ones.
“Truly one of the few men that could be called a ‘cop's cop,’” the Livingston Police Department stated. “His experience and knowledge was one thing, but his ability to talk to people and never forget a face was legendary. You will be missed, brother.”
During his years on the force, Brennan became known around town for his work on the township’s "Project Lifesaver” initiative, a program that helps provide rapid response to save lives and reduce the potential for serious injury for adults and children who wander due to Alzheimer’s, dementia, autism, Down syndrome, and other related cognitive conditions.
Project Lifesaver was first introduced to Livingston in 2006, and was spearheaded by Corporal Brennan and Lieutenant Edward Kelly. According to Livingston Police Captain Gary Marshuetz, Brennan and Kelly initially funded the program through donations from various service organizations, corporations and private citizens. The program helps locate persons at-risk of wandering by using a radio transmitter device attached to the wrist or ankle by way of a plastic or nylon wristband.
“Through the dedication of our police officers and the use of these bracelets, we will be able to locate the missing person quickly, returning them to the safety of their home,” Marshuetz said in 2011, admiring Brennan and other officers’ commitment to bettering the township.
Livingston Mayor Michael Silverman said Brennan has been a valuable member of the local police force for many years and would be missed by the entire community. Silverman wished all the best to Brennan’s family during this time of pain.
“We are all better people because we knew Bill. He taught everyone he met how to be the best humans beings we could be,” Facebook user Terry Kocur said. “The world is a sadder place without him, but we are better people for having him in our lives, a full angel now, as he should be. Thank you, God, for sharing him with so many of us all these years. Rest in peace, Bill, you've earned it. We love you still, and always will.”
A viewing will be held on Friday, Nov. 27, from 2 p.m. until 9 p.m. at Quinn-Hopping Funeral Home, located 145 E Mt Pleasant Ave in Livingston. Shuttles will be provided from the parking areas nearby.
The funeral mass will be at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 28, at St. Philomena Church, located at 386 S. Livingston Ave. in Livingston.