Steinbrenner fund pledges $40K to fallen trooper's children
Support for the family of fallen state police Trooper David Cunniff is now coming from a foundation that provides educational assistance to police and firemen who have died in the line of duty, according to the New York Daily News.
The group, called the Silver Shield Foundation, has pledged $20,000 for each of Cunniff’s two children, Caleb, 6, and Zachary, 4, to go toward their education, according to The Daily News.
“In the wake of this tragedy, we want the Cunniff family to know that they are not alone in their loss,” the organization’s chairman, William G. Walters, told The Daily News.
The Silver Shield Foundation sets aside an education fund for each surviving child of police officers and firefighters, according to the group’s Web site. The fund helps with higher education tuition, as well as academic intervention to keep the children from falling behind in school work in the wake of the tragedy, according to the site.
The foundation itself was created 30 years ago by George Steinbrenner, the late owner of the New York Yankees, according to the organization’s website.
The funds go toward the children of police officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty.
Cunniff, 35, of Princetown, died Tuesday of injuries suffered when a tractor-trailer slammed into his trooper car on the Thruway during a traffic stop in Amsterdam on Monday night.
Cunniff was a nine-year veteran of the state police.
He has been described in the days following his death as someone who did anything for his children, ages 4 and 6, one of whom suffers from a rare genetic muscle disease.
He was also someone who was devoted to his wife and his faith. The family attended Grace Fellowship Church at 20 Delatour Road in Latham, where services will be held this morning at 11.
His son Caleb, now 6, suffers from a disease called spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). It’s an incurable disease that causes loss of muscle function and requires use of a wheelchair. Caleb got an electric wheelchair in 2011, donated by Shriners Hospitals for Children.
The family has requested that memorial contributions be sent to an SMA organization, Families of SMA, 925 Busse Road, Elk Grove Village, IL, 60007, or www.curesma.org in memory of David W. Cunniff.