Officer Palermo rushed to lower Manhattan on 9/11 and immediately began to assist in search-and-rescue efforts. He was diagnosed with cancer five years ago, according to the New York Daily News.
Although the 9/11 attack happened in 2001, it has taken years for the cancers to develop and for the officers to succumb to the illness. 12 Officers died of 9/11 related cancer in 2015, while 4 died in 2016, and 5 so far in 2017.
NYPD Deputy Inspector Gregory Abruzzo said, "He was a highly respected cop and beloved by his fellow officers. Lou was very modest when talking about his work, but just the opposite when it came to talking about his family."
Officer Palermo's brother-in-law Eric Clintron said, "The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long. And you burned very bright. But I read that again and it’s true except for one thing: It didn't burn half as long. This light will never fade, and it continues through his legacy.”
Officer Palermo was a 23-year veteran who was stationed for many years in the department’s Third Precinct in Carle Place, according to Newsday. Police said that he loved serving that community so much that he turned down at least one transfer. He was honored shortly before his death with a promotion to the elite Special Bureau of Operations.
Officer Palermo is survived by his wife Deborah, and their three children: Celine, age 18; Caitlyn, age 15; and Caleb, age 9.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Nassau County Police Officer Luis Palermo, Jr., both blood and blue. Godspeed, sir, we will take the watch from here. Thank you for your service.
Officer Palermo, your life mattered.