After decades of service, Chief Patrick Montuore steps down as Executive Director of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (November 29, 2021) — To everything there is a season, and after nearly three decades of service, a new season is emerging for retired Florham Park, N.J., police chief, Patrick Montuore.
On October 31, 2021, Montuore retired as Executive Director of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial to allow more time with family and to “help guide the Police Unity Tour into its next decade during these uncertain times,” he said.
“I’ve had the opportunity to be involved with the Memorial since the beginning, from selling t-shirts to fundraising through local Police Benevolent Associations in Madison and Florham Park (N.J.),” said Montuore. “It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve in the role of executive director of the Memorial, remembering the fallen and keeping their stories alive. What a journey that has been for us all.”
Montuore sees his life in law enforcement in three phases: “First, I was blessed to serve our citizens for almost 30 years, retiring as police chief in 2015. Second, in 1997, I founded the Police Unity Tour, an organization that provides comfort, support and unique bonding time, as we ride for those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country’s freedom and democracy. And third, grace was granted to me here with the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund to further serve our family in blue.”
This lifetime of service began for Montuore as a young boy, watching his uncle in his police uniform, and listening to his stories of helping families. “I would think, I’d love to be that, but never thought I’d be that person wearing the uniform,” said Montuore.
“So when I had the opportunity to be involved in law enforcement, graduated from that police academy, and got the responsibility of going into my community to serve, I didn’t take it lightly,” he continued. “I took it with such pride and commitment and grace. I thought that those people in my community deserved to have someone help them the best way they can. So that’s what I did.”
As a young officer involved in community policing, Montuore saw a better opportunity to get out among the citizens, and gave his chief a proposal about bicycle patrol. “I thought it would be a better way to touch our community, without having a big piece of steel around us,” said Montuore.
From that came the opportunity to further his skills through bicycle patrol training. In one particular class, he had to come up with a presentation on how to make meaningful change through cycling. His idea was to cycle to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. “When I got back to my department after the training, I said, you know, we really should do this.”
He convinced a few guys from his class and an old friend to participate. From there, he started working on the plan. “Everybody in my community rallied around this idea that we were going to D.C. on a ride to honor our fallen,” said Montuore. There were 18 riders that first year. Since then, the Police Unity Tour has seen as many as 2,800 riders in a year.
Montuore sees this as an opportune time to hand over the executive director reins, as the Memorial recently finished an expansion to ensure adequate space for honoring the fallen. Yet, he will remain active with the Police Unity Tour and its efforts to support the Memorial.
“I am fulfilled and satisfied beyond words to have had the opportunity to represent and advocate for our nation’s law enforcement community,” said Montuore. “I see myself contributing up until my last breath. I don’t know how else to live my life. I want to make sure this legacy lives on.”
About the National Law Enforcement Memorial and Museum
Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement, and making it safer for those who serve. The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial (LawMemorial.org) contains the names of 22,611 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. The National Law Enforcement Museum (LawEnforcementMuseum.org) expands and enriches the relationship between law enforcement and the community by sharing true stories of service and sacrifice from across the nation. Through immersive, educational exhibitions and insightful programs, we preserve the history of law enforcement for generations to come.
About the Police Unity Tour (www.policeunitytour.com)
The Police Unity Tour is a four-day bicycle ride from New Jersey to Washington, DC, whose mission is to raise public awareness about law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty, and to raise funds for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. The Tour is made up of nine chapters consisting of nearly 2,600 members nationwide. Since its inception, the Police Unity Tour has donated more than $30 million to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.