|AMKC COs Patrick Coffey & J. B. Brown retire after DOC service totaling 71+ years!
|Not everyday do two Correction Officers at the same Rikers Island facility retire after combined NYC DOC service totaling 71+ years! That's what has happened at the Anna M. Kross Center (AMKC) with the retirement of C.O. Patrick Coffey (32 years service) and
James B. Brown (39 years service).
To mark the occasion and honor the duo's DOC dedication, the "AMKC family" scheduled a front lawn lunch time gathering Friday, August 19th . Unfortunately, a sudden illness prevented Brown attending.
The CorrectionHistory.Org web site and its New York Correction History group page on Facebook join in saluting the pair.Their 71+ years service total was brought to our attention by fellow C-95 C.O. Glenn Ebron after he read our web site story about NYC DOC Dinosaurs.
The DOC Dinos were a very informal group of veteran officers who, after the state legislature in 1973 created the multi-tiered pension system, realized that, as Tier I category members, they would be the last to have the full benefits package. So they donned dino pins in self-deprecating humor to signify being "the last of their kind."
He emailed the following information to the New York Correction History Society (NYCHS) webmaster:
"We have true DOC Dinosaurs at AMKC, better known as C-95. They just put their papers in:
"As for the dino pins, I know that they did have them.
"We are planning a celebration of their service.
"I think of the riot days at HDM, C- 95, North Facility and C-76 . . . . It was Correction Officers like J.B. who, in effect, wrote the institutional policies as we have now, because Correction Officers like him were on the front lines . . . .
"Correction Officer Patty Coffey and others assisted union leadership winning for Correction Officers the 'step off in 20 retirement.' But he didn't 'step off.' "
"WOW! Having Patty and JB retire is certainly bittersweet.
"While I'm glad for them to enjoy life beyond DOC and so very grateful that I was fortunate enough to have been 'raised' by them, I'm saddened to think that the next generation of officers will only know them as a 'name' and not get the benefit of knowing them personally and professionally.
"So many legends have walked the halls of AMKC and have each in their own way left their 'mark' but none more than Patty and JB.
"It's difficult to think of AMKC without thinking of them . . . .
"It's up to us who remain in the career we've all embraced to keep their legacy active and do our best to pass on their collective wisdom to those who will take the reins after us.
"I know that I'm a better Correction officer and person for having had the privilege of learning from them.
"No matter where I'm assigned in DOC, I will always consider AMKC my 'home' and those I've had the pleasure to work with while assigned there my brothers and sisters.
"I always get a special feeling when I 'come home' to AMKC, although now, home will be a little more empty without two of my brothers, Patty and JB."
Given the very loose and informal nature of the NYC DOC Dinosaurs, Tier I members began conferring dino pins on non-Tier I veteran officers after they reached certain plateaus of DOC service such as 25 years.
Patrick Coffey, commenting on the Facebook New York Correction History page about NYCHS web site's DOC Dinosaurs story, wrote:
"Someone gave me one after I did 25 years but I can't remember who. . . ."