Benefit in Memory of Officer Lehner

Next Thursday at Club Marcella; Funds for New K-9

Mike Baggerman
November 09, 2017 - 5:00 pm

WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - A benefit will be held on Thursday, November 16 at Club Marcella to honor Officer Craig Lehner.

The benefit, which runs from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., will feature a 50/50 raffle, silent auction, at least 70 baskets, plus food from various restaurants. Proceeds from the benefit will go towards the purchase of a new K-9 member, which will be named in Lehner's honor in partnership with Lehner's family.

Lehner went missing in the Niagara River on October 13 during a training exercise with Buffalo Police's Underwater Rescue Team. He was found five days later.

"We ask the community come out and support this great event to help keep Craig's legacy alive," Buffalo Police Lieutenant Jeff Rinaldo said. "Because as we all know Superman never dies."

The average police canine costs anywhere from $8,000-$11,000 depending on the breed.

Police are still working on finding a new partner for Shield, Officer Lehner's K-9 partner. They expect him to have a new partner within the next 30 days but have to go through union protocol in order to complete the process. Until then, Shield has made community appearances.

"A lot of schools and other institutions are taking it upon themselves to do fundraisers like dress down days and other things to raise money for Shield and the other K-9 team," Rinaldo said. "Shield continues to fulfill those roles within the department."

The fundraiser allows the police department to offset costs. Typically, purchasing a new K-9 dog comes from department funds.

Donations will also be accepted by mail. Please make checks sent to the attention of "K-9 Fund" and sent to the Buffalo Police Federal Credit Union located at 74 Franklin Street in Buffalo.

LISTEN: Buffalo Police Lieutenant Jeff Rinaldo on the fundraiser at Club Marcella



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