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9/11
New Hero Search Sean Collier - Apr. 18, 2013 (27724)

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MIT Campus Police Dept. Patch
Resided: Somerville (Middlesex County)
MA, USA
Born: Unk  
Fallen: Apr. 18, 2013
Race/Sex: Caucasian Male / 26 yrs. of age
Agency
Dept: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Campus Police
Cambridge, MA   USA
Dept. Type: County/Police
Hero's Rank: Officer
Sworn Date: 1/2012
FBI Class: Homicide - Gun
Weapon Class: Firearm
Agency URL: Click Here
Bio: Sean Collier had only worked at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for about a year. But he was already popular with his colleagues in the campus police department, as well as with students, often joining them on hiking and skiing trips.

MIT says Collier was a Wilmington native and Somerville resident who had worked at MIT since January 2012. Before that, he was a civilian employee of the Somerville Police Department.

MIT Chief John DiFava says Collier was a dedicated officer, liked by his colleagues and the MIT community.

MIT President L. Rafael Reif says Collier's loss is "deeply painful."

Bio: ============================================

Sean Collier, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer who was shot and killed during a confrontation with the two Boston Marathon bombing suspects, was a 26-year-old at the start of a law-enforcement career he considered a calling, according to police.

Collier had been with the campus police force for only 14 months when he was found shot near Vasser and Main streets in Cambridge Thursday night at 10:30 p.m., not long after the first reports of gunfire near campus. According to authorities, Collier was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

MIT Police Chief John DiFava praised Collier on Friday as a devoted cop early in a career that he seemed to love.

“Sean was one of these guys who really looked at police work as a calling,” DiFava said through the university. “He was born to be a police officer.”

For a campus cop, DiFava took a keen interest in student life, even joining the MIT Outing Club, which goes on hiking, skiing and rock climbing jaunts. Collier's Facebook page, which was apparently taken down Friday morning, was full of such photos of the outdoors.

“In a very short period of time, it was remarkable how engaged he was with students, particularly graduate students,” DiFava said.

DiFava's portrayal of a young and eager police officer was seconded by Lt. William Rymill of the Somerville Police Department. Before joining the MIT police force in January 2012, Collier, a native of Wilmington, Mass., had worked in the Somerville department's information technology division.

Collier helped develop and maintain the department's website and, judging from YouTube, apparently shot occasional video for the department, like that of an officer's funeral in 2010.

As a young civilian employee in Somerville, Collier also volunteered his time as an unpaid auxiliary police officer, getting called in to help when the department needed more boots on the ground -- a sure sign of someone devoted to law enforcement who aspired to a badge.

At MIT, he found that opportunity.

"He was an all-around great person," Rymill said. "He is going to be greatly, sorely missed."

Collier was a graduate of Salem State University, according to a statement posted on the school's Facebook page Friday morning. He'd earned a degree in criminal justice with honors in 2009.

The school's Facebook page quickly filled up with condolences and praise from Salem State students and graduates, who called their fellow alum a hero who ultimately helped nab one of the bombing suspects.

"We'll never know how many lives he may have saved. God bless you for your sacrifice," one poster wrote.

MIT Executive Vice President and Treasurer Israel Ruiz and Chancellor Eric Grimson posted a message of condolence to Collier on the MIT website on Thursday.

Fatal Incident Summary
Offender: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev :: Caucasian / Male - 19 years old
brother of suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev,

  
Offender: Tamerlan Tsarnaev :: Caucasian / Male - 26 years old
   Pic 1    
Location: MA   USA   Thu. Apr. 18, 2013
Summary: Authorities say the 26-year-old Collier was shot and killed by the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.

Collier was found shot several times in his vehicle.

Disposition: Suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed dead by police in a shoot out with police later in the night of Officer Collier's murder.

Suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was wounded and taken into custody a day later.

Source: Article      Click
Source: Article      Click
Source: Article      Click
WATERTOWN, Mass. - Sean Collier, the MIT police officer killed in a late-night confrontation with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects, did more than protect students at the prestigious university. He danced the Lindy Hop with them, went hiking and even yodeled with them in New Hampshire's White Mountains.

Collier, 26, was making a mark as a dedicated police officer who connected with students after only 15 months on the job, MIT Police Chief John DiFava said.

"Sean was one of these guys who really looked at police work as a calling," DiFava said in a statement Friday. "He was born to be a police officer."

PHOTOS: Bombing suspect captured | Scene (graphic) | Victims VIDEOS: Suspect in hospital | Latest videos MORE: Cartoonists reflect | Complete coverage

"In a very short period of time, it was remarkable how engaged he was with students," DiFava said.

A 2009 criminal justice graduate of Salem State University who lived in Somerville, Collier had previously worked for five years in the IT department of the Somerville Police Department. He was No. 1 on the civil service list for the next opening as a police officer, Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone said Friday.

"He was a fantastic employee, a dedicated public servant," Curtatone said. "This kid was talented." Collier, who was not married, became an MIT police officer in January 2012 but kept in touch with the Somerville department, helping to maintain its website, Curtatone said.

Outside Collier's home , officers said they cordoned off the street with yellow police tape so that his friends, family and neighbors could grieve in peace.

A handful of Somerville Police Department officers converged outside the white, three-story house, at times embracing, as a drizzle fell.

One female officer said she was too upset to talk about her fallen former colleague. "It's traumatic,"she said. "He worked with us."

"We are heartbroken by the loss of our wonderful and caring son and brother, Sean Collier," his family said in a statement published by The Boston Globe. "Our only solace is that Sean died bravely doing what he committed his life to -- serving and protecting others."

At MIT, outside of his regular duties Collier took part in the MIT Outing Club, an outdoor adventure group. He amazed some members with his rapid embrace of winter hiking in the White Mountains -- home to some of the nation's most brutal weather.

"The thing that impressed me about Sean was how enthusiastically he took the plunge into winter hiking, how quickly he mastered it, and how rapidly he made friends," MIT graduate student Matthew Gilbertson said.

MIT senior Michele Pratusevich said one hike included yodeling, and Collier was one of the first to try.

"He was eager to strut his plaid flannel, yodel off the sides of a mountain, enjoy eating his chocolate and pepperoni, and be happy and cheerful even with our exceedingly slow pace," she said.

On campus, Collier often stopped by MIT's student center while on his shift -- and sometimes danced the Lindy Hop, said Maddie Hickman, a 2011 MIT graduate.

"At first, some of the dancers were nervous at the 'police presence' in the room, but Sean made friends quickly," she said.

Source: Article      Click
MIT’s fallen officer built enduring connections By Carolyn Y. Johnson, David Abel and Kay Lazar

April 19, 2013

Sean Collier, a 26-year-old MIT police officer, was killed in a late night confrontation with the two suspects behind the deadly Boston Marathon.

When MIT Police Chief John DiFava heard that a very promising young officer named Sean Collier probably would get a call he had long been hoping for — an invitation to join the Somerville Police Department — the chief pushed him to stay.

Collier wasn’t just there for the salary. He had a knack for earning people’s trust, for building rapport with the community he policed. DiFava knew Collier’s departure would be a significant loss for MIT.

Then, near the end of his shift Thursday night, Collier, 26, was shot multiple times in a late-night confrontation with, law enforcement officials believe, the two young men responsible for the deadly Boston Marathon bombings. Collier was later declared dead at Massachusetts General Hospital.

“Besides this being absolutely heart wrenching,” DiFava said Friday, “it’s also a tremendous loss of a huge talent.” Related

Wounded MBTA officer known as a devoted father

On Friday afternoon, American flags began to appear on a cordoned-off block of Curtis Street in Somerville as the news spread that Collier had been killed.

Through tears, a roommate — who trained with Collier at the police academy and declined to provide his name — said Collier was “awesome,” his only fault being that he was too brave.

“He was the guy who went to help,” the roommate said. “The best guy got shot down.’’

In a statement, Collier’s family expressed their grief.

“We are heartbroken by the loss of our wonderful and caring son and brother, Sean Collier,” the family wrote. “Our only solace is that Sean died bravely doing what he committed his life to — serving and protecting others. We are thankful for the outpouring of support and condolences offered by so many people.”

Collier, a Wilmington native, started working at MIT in January 2012, and on Thursday night, he was on his normal 3-to-11:15 p.m. assignment, DiFava said. According to a statement from the Middlesex district attorney’s office, at 10:20 p.m, gunshots were reported to police, and 10 minutes later Collier was found shot in his vehicle, outside MIT’s distinctive Stata Center.

As soon as news of his death began to trickle out, expressions of love and sorrow began pouring in for Collier, who had become a friend to many graduate students. A distraught student rode her bike to the MIT police station Friday morning to give her condolences, and on a blog set up to collect memories, members of the MIT community left heartfelt remembrances of his generosity and spirit, ranging from the help he gave in moving a 10-gallon fish tank sloshing with water, to driving an hour and a half out of his way to drop someone off.

Prior to joining the MIT force, Collier had worked at the Somerville Police Department as a civilian employee, where he was known for his skill with computers and his kindness.

Somerville police Lieutenant William Rymill, who had known Collier for five years, said that he often would come in on his time off to help out, or help officers set up their personal computers at home.

Rymill said that Collier had scored high on a civil service exam, and was likely to be called to join the Somerville Police Department in June.

“Anybody could relate to him. Sean could talk to anybody,” Rymill said. “The girls here in dispatch haven’t stopped crying.”

Collier played on a local kickball team called Kickhopopotamus and participated in a national tournament in Las Vegas. He also was an avid and tenacious outdoorsman, climbing Mount Washington during winter. For a “retro” hike, he whimsically dressed in plaid flannel and yodeled at the top of his lungs.

A trainer at the Boston Sports Club in Davis Square, Chrissy, said she first met Collier as a client. They quickly became friends outside the gym, too. They both liked country music and planned to attend a concert together this summer.

Chrissy, who did not give her last name, said that Collier protected everyone around him. When she was assaulted in the fall of 2011, she had to report to the Somerville police station to identify suspects in a lineup. When she arrived at the station, Collier greeted her at the front desk and then stayed with her throughout the process.

“He sat with me while I was waiting to go in for the lineup and drove me home after to make sure I was OK,” Chrissy said, saying his presence helped her get through that day and the days that followed.

Collier graduated from Salem State University in 2009 with honors and a degree in criminal justice. Kristen Kuehnle, the chairwoman of the school’s criminal justice department, remembered Collier from a course she teaches on Women in Criminal Justice. He was a student who always participated in class, asked questions, and wrote well.

“He was everything you would want in a police officer,” Kuehnle said.

In a statement, MIT president L. Rafael Reif mourned Collier.

“Our thoughts today are with his family, his friends, his colleagues on our police force, and, by all accounts, the many other members of our community who knew him,” Reif said.

DiFava said Collier was the same funny, charismatic, and committed individual in uniform as he was when in street clothes. He said that a particular problem MIT police face is that many students come from countries in which law enforcement officers are not trusted or respected. Collier, he said, was able to overcome such cultural barriers.

It is a sentiment echoed on the online forum commemorating Collier by a member of the MIT community who remembers passing Collier when he made trips to the 7-Eleven for snacks.

“I am brown and a foreigner so usually American police make me a little nervous, but I recall passing by you one time and deciding that I liked you, because you looked unusually nice and trustworthy, and I kind of wanted to offer you my sour candy but thought it would be too random,” a member of the MIT community wrote. “Now I wish I had done it anyway.”

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