New NYPD ESU officers carry on family tradition after graduation

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 05:14PM
Stacey Sager has this story


MARINE PARK, Brooklyn - The NYPD's Emergency Services Unit (ESU) will welcome 36 new members at a graduation ceremony Thursday, and for three of them, a family connection makes the new job much more meaningful.

ESU officers are the ones racing to a hostage situation, chasing a running bull, or capturing a guy with suction cups climbing Trump Tower. They're also busy hurling themselves out of helicopters, and in fact, they're quite comfortable reaching new heights after finishing eight months of grueling training.

Joseph Nacarlo, Jr., now carries on the tradition of his dad, Joe, Sr., who retired after his ESU lost 14 members on 9/11.

"My old partner gave him a bracelet that we've been wearing for 15 years now," Narcrlo, Sr., said. "So it's hard not to get emotional about it."
And for Nacarlo, Jr., following in his father's footsteps is an honor.

"Seeing my father growing up," he recalled. "Seeing him in his uniform, him bringing me down to the trucks."

Nacarlo and fellow officer Rob Sullivan have learned from their dads since they were young boys, and in Sullivan's case, his uncle too. He's retired from ESU, while Sullivan's dad was in FDNY and died from a 9/11-related illness.

"My uncle, I looked up to him my whole life," Sullivan said. "My father, and the things that they do."

The legacies are no surprise for the ESU, which dates back 87 years to the Great Depression. However, the trucks and equipment have come a long long way.

The job continues to evolve, spanning generations for some. But for all officers, it's a job where each day is sure to be different from the previous one.
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