38-Year Old Emmanuel Familia Identified As Worcester Police Officer Who Drowned Trying To Save Child In Pond

Worcester Chief Of Police Steven M. Sargent said both Familia and a 14-year-old boy drowned in Green Hill Pond on Friday.

Video Transcript

- This afternoon, the City of Worcester and the it's the police department suffered two unimaginable devastating losses. Today, we lost one of our brother officers along with a 14-year-old male in the pond at Greenhill Park . This afternoon at 135 several calls came in for a report of a person possibly drowning in the pond at Greenhill Park. Worcester police along with Worcester fire department arrived on scene. Upon arrival, officers availed several people in the water.

Officers also observed a male toward the center of the pond reaching an arm up and struggling. Five officers entered the water in an attempt to locate and rescue the victims and to secure the other individuals who were also in the water. During this rescue attempt two individuals were brought to shore. At this time officers on scene realized that one of our officers was missing. It was now apparent that we had two victims.

That was located the officer at 2:28 PM. He was brought to shore where UMass EMS immediately initiated life saving protocols and transported the officer to the hospital. The officer was identified as 38-year-old officer Emmanuel Familia known to his brother and sister officers here at the Worcester Police Department as Manny. He later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.

At 3:25 PM the 14-year-old male was located by the divers. He was also rushed to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. He's not being identified at this time. All of the officers that were in the water were transported to the hospital for evaluation.

A total of seven divers were involved in the search and recovery. One diver was also transported to the hospital to be treated for minor injuries. Officer Manny Familia was a five-year veteran of the Worcester Police Department. The Worcester Police Department has lost a brother, friend, and a partner. The City of Worcester has lost a hero.

We will remember and honor his selfless devotion to Worcester and his ultimate sacrifice to save someone he didn't know. Officer Familia leaves behind his wife Jennifer, two children, his daughter Jayla, and his son Jovan, and his parents. We'd would like to express our deepest condolences to his family and his friends. Was the police family will be there to support them and give them strength at this difficult time.

I would also like to express my condolences to the family of the 14-year-old male. I ask that you give both families their privacy during this time of mourning. I ask that you keep the city and our department in your prayers as we mourn these losses. Thank you.

- Today our hearts are heavy as we mourn the death of Worcester police officer Emmanuel Familia and the young person he tried to rescue. Officer Familia died tragically in the to do duty doing what he was trained to do-- to serve and protect the residents of our city. Officer Familia without regard for his own safety attempted to rescue a young drowning victim at Worcester's Greenhill Park.

This is the type of person that Manny he was, someone who'd lay down his life for someone else's child. We ask this and so much more from the members of the Worcester Police Department. I join with the city council, Congressman McGovern, the city administration, Chief Sargent, city manager Ed Agustus, and members of our police department, along with our fellow citizens in offering our prayers, our heartfelt gratitude, and our condolences to the Familia family. His wife Jennifer, his son Giovanni, and daughter Jayla. As we remember the Familia family, please keep the family of the drowning victim in your prayers this evening. I also want to recognize and thank the other police officers who responded to the scene and rescued two of the children. I also want to thank the members of the Worcester Fire Department for assisting the search and the recovery. Thank you.

- I stand before you this evening with the heaviest of hearts to acknowledge the line of duty death of Officer Emmanuel Familia, and the devastating loss of a minor in a drowning accident at Greenhill Park. There are no words to express how difficult this loss is. God knows the city has had more than its share of loss. I know I speak for every person in this city when I say that our hearts are broken and our collective prayers are with Officer Familia's entire family, including his two children, Jayla and Giovanni, who are students in Worcester Public Schools, his wife Jennifer, as well as with the other victim of drowning today.

This is an incredibly heavy burden for Chief Sergeant, for Officer Familia's partners, and the men and women of the Worcester Police Department. I want to acknowledge all the police officer's whose heroic actions led to the rescue of two other miners in distress. Their actions speak volumes for the type of dedication and selflessness that is synonymous with the Worcester Police Department. I also want to thank and acknowledge the sustained and valiant efforts of the Worcester Fire Department to save both. As we collectively mourn this tremendous loss, I stand before you and ask our city to do again what it has had to do all too often, wrap its arms around this family and around this department. Thank you.

- This is a very sad day for the Worcester Police Department family. I use the word family because that is exactly what we are. We are brothers, we are sisters, and everyone's family members are part of our family. Officer Familia was a credit to the department. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, his children, and his family, as well as the family of the child that perished whom Manny was attempting to save. Thank you.