Posthumous Degree Presentation Made to Family of Slain NYPD Officer at Funeral
GLENDALE, N.Y., Dec. 27, 2014 /Christian Newswire/ — The family of slain NYPD officer Rafael “Ralph” Ramos was given a letter from the President of Faith Evangelical College and Seminary (Tacoma, WA), Dr. Michael Adams, during the first of two funerals held last night, December 26. Officer Ramos was working towards a BA in Religion as a distance student so he could qualify to be a police chaplain.
Photo: The letter presented to the Ramos Family indicating the posthumous conferral of a BA in Religion with honors to Officer Rafael Ramos.
A delegation of clergy conveyed the letter that announced the degree, which was nearly complete, would be conferred within weeks “with honors.” The actual diploma will be presented to Mrs. Ramos at a subsequent ceremony following a meeting of faculty and trustees for the institution.
Distinguished Alumnus of the college and a civilian chaplain on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, the Rev. Rob Schenck, D.Min., led the presentation. He was joined by retired NYPD chaplain and the 3rd U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom the Reverend Dr. Suzan Johnson-Cook, and the director of the Christian Defense Coalition and pastor of the Church on the Hill in Washington, the Reverend Patrick J. Mahoney.
Schenck, Johnson-Cook, and Mahoney first paid their respects to Officer Ramos by presenting the letter to his open casket before handing it to Mrs. Ramos, who was visibly moved. She had earlier told Faith Evangelical College and Seminary president Dr. Michael Adams that her husband valued his studies very highly and “constantly talked about earning his degree.”
Schenck, Johnson-Cook, and Mahoney will attend the second, larger funeral Saturday morning as well as the graveside committal.
Rev. Schenck said, “It was one of the greatest honors of my 37-year ministry career to convey this honor to a fallen hero and outstanding churchman. Officer Ramos was an extraordinary man and the comments made publicly and privately by his family, friends, and colleagues bore testimony to that fact.”
Ambassador Johnson-Cook said, “The service for Officer Ramos was like a family reunion for the NYPD. The camaraderie is like nothing else. I spent 21 years as a police chaplain but I never grow tired of it. It was as touching as ever.”
Rev. Mahoney said, “Mrs. Ramos lit up when we presented the letter of conferral to her. Her countenance changed. It was stunning to see her reaction. It was a little bit of sunshine in an otherwise very gloomy time.”