Lakewood Officer Shot During 2009 Raid Retires After 25 Years of Service
Lakewood-(via TLS)–It was September 24, 2009 when Lakewood police officers Louis Sasso, Jonathan Wilson, Greg Meyer and Leonard Nieves were shot during the raid on a township home that had been involved in guns and drugs. The offices were executing a warrant for an arrest when Jamie Gonzales opened fire on the officers.
Wilson was shot in the head and critically wounded, but survived. Meyer was shot in the foot, while Sasso and Nieves were each shot in the chest, but were saved by their bulletproof vests.
Nearly three years later, on August 29th, Sasso retired from the department after 25 years of service.
“I don’t know where all the time went”, Lt. Sasso said in his farewell speech. “because here I stand on the doorstep of my retirement – and it just seems like yesterday that I walked into this place.”
“I’d like to thank the Police Department and the Township of Lakewood for giving me the opportunity to live out my dream career”, Sasso added.
Lakewood Mayor Menasche Miller said the departure of Sasso was bittersweet. ”On the one hand, it’s a profound loss to the town. A man of his stature who has given the amount of time he has put into the town. It’s a tremendous loss to the town and we’re going to miss him immensely,” the mayor said. “On the other hand, that’s my brain talking. From the heart, I wish [Sasso] a hearty retirement, young enough to enjoy the family, enjoy the kids, enjoy the time well spent.”
Miller presented Sasso a proclamation from the township in honor of his service as a police offer to the town.
Lakewood PBA delegate Steve Kelusak shed a personal side of Sasso that many others may have not know, such as his passion for dance and music and presented him with a pair of purple ballerina slippers to hang from his mirror.
Sasso said he had always wanted to be a police officer since his time as child watching Starsky and Hutch and Baretta.