YONKERS, N.Y. (PIX11) — Family, friends, and colleagues gathered on Wednesday in Yonkers for the funeral of a police veteran killed last week when an unlicensed teen driver slammed into his vehicle.
Services for Frank Gualdino, who was posthumously promoted to detective sergeant, began at Sacred Heart Church around 11 a.m.
Gualdino, 53, was just months from retirement following a distinguished 24-year career with the Yonkers Police Department. Instead, his life was cut tragically short on Dec. 1 when an unlicensed 16-year-old boy behind the wheel crashed into his department vehicle, authorities said.
Gualdino was in an unmarked patrol vehicle on Tuckahoe Road near the Sprain Brook Parkway around 3:30 p.m. when the teen lost control of a BMW M5 he was driving, crossed the double yellow line into Gualdino’s lane, and hit Gualdino’s vehicle, then a Bee-Line bus, according to authorities. Gualdino was rushed to a nearby hospital, but could not be saved.
Overnight Tuesday into Wednesday, the Mario Cuomo Bridge was bathed in blue and gold light in honor of Gualdino. His death marks the first for a Yonkers officer in the line of duty in 40 years.
“He was loved by everyone,” Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano recently said of Gualdino. “Not just the men and women he worked with, but the people he was sworn to serve and protect.”
Gualdino is survived by his wife and two children.