Behind The NOPD Badge #32

Thomas Albert

Thomas J. Albert, Sr.
Captain, New Orleans (LA) Police Department

Captain Albert loved football at Holy Cross high school in New Orleans, Louisiana. Leadership was a quality that he possessed, even then, while serving as a Captain of the Jr. football team when he played as a freshman. He also had a love for music that developed during his teens and he even enjoyed playing his clarinet in a neighborhood band. The band that he played with later filled his spot with a young clarinet player who played with a beautiful clarinet. His name was Pierre Dewey Lafontaine, later known as the great clarinet player Pete Fountain. Captain Albert sometimes joked that if he had to be replaced, he was replaced by the best. He did not continue to play his clarinet but he did regularly play the clarinet for his wife and also continued to enjoy listening to his Dixieland band records.

Captain Albert always wanted to serve his country and his community. In fact, he enlisted in the United States Navy during the Korean War when he was stationed in Adak, Alaska. During his time in the navy, while on USS Coucal, he rose to the rank of Yeoman Chief Clerk. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1950 to 1954.

After completing his service with the U.S. Navy, Captain Albert applied to the New Orleans Police Department in Louisiana and became a police officer in 1955. By doing that, he was continuing a tradition of service that began with his grandfather who was an N.O.P.D. officer during the early 1900’s. Captain Albert said that he chose to be a policeman simply because he wanted to help people. During his career, he served as a Patrolman, a Desk Sergeant, a Sergeant and as a Lieutenant. He was transferred to the New Orleans Police Academy when earning the rank of Lieutenant. There, he served as the Assistant Director of the Bureau of Education for the New Orleans Police Academy. While at the Academy he was later promoted to the rank of Captain where he continued to serve until transferred to take command of the 8th District as a Captain. He would often, and with pride, describe himself as a policemen, a husband, and a father and said, “that this is my life.” As an officer with N.O.P.D., he took his oath to protect and serve the citizens of New Orleans very seriously and he told his family that he lived by that oath.

In 1979, the New Orleans police officers went on strike. Captain Albert told his wife that he took an oath and that he had to live by it, so he could not go on strike. Of course he did express feeling conflicted because he also wanted what was best for his officers. Many police officers did make the decision to go on strike. He told his family that every man had to do what they felt was right. When hoping and planning for post-strike operations, Captain Albert said that he planned to take his officers back and work with them supportively, just as they had before the strike. This was a very difficult time for the many officers who were on strike as well as for the officers who did not strike. It was a challenging time for New Orleans and everyone wanted quick and fair resolutions.

Captain Albert worked many long hours at police headquarters in the weeks prior to the strike. He was preparing for a potential strike and also for the Mardi Gras celebrations that were about to take place in the City and surrounding metropolitan areas. After working several strenuous weeks and and working consecutive shifts, Captain Albert was at his desk when he collapsed from fatigue and had a fatal heart attack. His officers broke the strike lines to help in getting him out of police headquarters. The Captain was known to always be there for his officers and in his time of need, they were there for him.

Captain Thomas J. Albert, Sr. served the New Orleans Police Dept. from 1955 to 1979. He was a dedicated Police Officer, husband, and father. He is loved and remembered.

He is loved and missed by his family and his wife, Gloria Angel Mangin. Together they had 4 children. Susan Albert Cahill Esq, Thomas J. Albert, Jr. M.D., Sandra Albert Keen, M.B.A. and the late James Mark Albert who passed away at 4 1/2 years old do to a Astrocytomas Brain Tumor. They have seven grand children: Sean Cahill Burleigh Esq., and Shane Cahill who will be attending Medical School. Lauren Albert Sands M.D., Catherine Albert Schraegle B.S.R.N., Thomas J. Albert III planning to attend law school. Jessie and Michael Keen are both authors. Captain Albert and his wife valued and encouraged education. He would be proud to know that his children and grandchildren have achieved so much academically.

Special thanks from Mrs. Albert, wife of Captain Albert: It is a great honor that my husband has been remembered on the The National Law Enforcement Memorial. This is something that his N.O.P.D officers, my children, grandchildren, family, and friends can visit with pride when visiting Washington. In fact, I received news that we would have 3 great-granddaughters during 2018. This is something special that shows how life goes on. One day, they will also be able to visit the memorial and see their great-grandfather’s name. This is such a special remembrance and it is forever. Another reason that it is such an honor to have Captain Thomas J. Albert, Sr., N.O.P.D. remembered within the memorial is because of so many other men and women also remembered on the memorial who paid the ultimate sacrifice. They will always be remembered.

N.O.P.D. Captain Thomas J. Albert, Sr. is so sadly missed by many.
Until we meet again, 1120
Love always,
Your Wife Gloria

Memorial Remembrance
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