SOMERVILLE, NJ - Victoria Tarentino, the widow of Summit Police Detective Matthew Tarentino, has given birth to a baby girl. Anastasia Catherine was born to the Somerville couple at Overlook Medical Center in Summit Thursday, according to the Summit Police Department's official Facebook page.
Detective Tarentino passed away in a three-car accident on Route 78 in the early morning hours of May 30. Tarentino, the department’s community policing and DARE officer, was on his way to a school to give a presentation on drug awareness and substance abuse when the accident occurred. He was promoted to detective posthumously.
"Mom and baby are doing great,” Summit Police reported on Facebook. "Proud big brothers Robbie and Ray are eager for their little sister to start playing with them!"
Both brothers are of pre-school age. Dressed in matching suits and bow ties, the boys stood hand-in-hand with their pregnant mother at funeral services for their father at Immaculata R.C. Church just days after the accident.
Hundreds of police officers and first responders from throughout New Jersey turned out for the memorial services and mass over a two-day period. Led by 80 police motorcycles, a procession numbering hundreds of police and emergency vehicles drove through Somerville to Resurrection Cemetery in Piscataway for graveside services.
The couple grew up together in Somerville and were high school sweethearts, attending Immaculata High School. He graduated Rutgers University, and was a police officer in South Bound Brook and Rutgers University prior to his service with the Summit Police Department. Victoria has been working at Immaculata as their marketing officer.
The Summit PAL will sponsor a Memorial 5K in downtown Summit Sept. 9 to raise money for the family. Tarentino was a devoted fitness enthusiast and runner. Those in Somerville who did not know him personally knew of him because they saw him on his daily runs throughout the Borough.