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The Sheriff’s Office Receives Donation to Help Families Impacted by Autism

Categories: | Author: sheriff sheriff | Posted: 9/8/2016 | Views: 2067
Project Lifesaver is Bringing Peace of Mind to Hundreds of County Residents
YAPHANK, NY-- The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office recently teamed up with the Nassau/Suffolk Chapter of the Autism Society of America (NSASA) to provide Project Lifesaver equipment at a greatly reduced cost to families who otherwise could not afford the initial outlay.  The group’s $510.00 donation was raised at their annual “Heineken with a Heart” fundraiser held at the Outback Steakhouse in Merrick.  

Officer Bryan Stoothoff of the Suffolk County Sheriff's Office is pictured with Landon White

Project Lifesaver is a countywide emergency response locator service capable of finding individuals if they wander and become lost. Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent F. DeMarco launched Project Lifesaver in 2008 to help alleviate some of the stress associated with wandering behavior and ensure that those who do wander are returned home safely. According to Sheriff DeMarco, enrollments have tripled in the last three years.  “Organizations like the Nassau/Suffolk Chapter of the Autism Society of America provide an invaluable service by helping us reach families that may not otherwise know about this lifesaving program, and by helping those who can’t afford the equipment,” stated Sheriff DeMarco. 

Suzanne Reek, the Chapter’s Executive Director, added, “We are pleased to help families in need that are caring for a child with autism and more fundraising events in support of Project Lifesaver are planned for the future.”

Project Lifesaver clients wear a personalized one ounce battery operated transmitter bracelet which emits a tracking signal every second, 24 hours a day. Transmitters are smaller than a quarter and each transmitter has its own unique frequency.  Additionally, the Sheriff’s Project Lifesaver personnel are specially trained, not only in search and rescue with the use of the electronic tracking equipment, but also in the methods necessary to communicate with a person who has a cognitive impairment such as Autism, or other mental challenges.

Landon White, a Suffolk County resident and recipient of one of the NSASA grants, recently posed for a photo with Officer Bryan Stoothoff, the Project Lifesaver Administrator for the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office.  Landon is seen here wearing a blue transmitter on his wrist.  “The bands and cases come in a variety of kid-friendly colors,” stated Officer Stoothoff.

For more information about Project Lifesaver, call (631) 852-3003. Information about the Nassau/Suffolk Chapter of the Autism Society of America may be found on their website at 

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