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Holyoke Police Department Announces the Retirement of Three Officers

holyokeWEBHOLYOKE, Mass. (WGGB) — Three long-time Holyoke Police Officers are retiring from the department after serving the community for more than 80 years combined.

Captain Arthur Monfette, Officer Donald Welch, and Officer Herbert Spafford retirements were announced tonight in a statement sent to ABC40 News by Lt. Matthew Moriarty.

Captain Monfette began his employment with the Holyoke Police Department as a Reserve back in October of 1978.

In 1984 as a Patrolman, Monfette was selected to be a K-9 Officer for the Holyoke Police Department. During his tenure as Commander of the CIB Monfette was also placed in charge of the Department’s Firearms training program. This program covered the training of officers in handguns, shotguns, patrol rifles and less than lethal weapon systems.

That same year Monfette was promoted to Sergeant and after a couple more promotions he became Captain in January of 2004.  Another title Monfette held starting in 2001 was Commander of the Criminal Investigation Bureau.

“Through his career, Captain Monfette, has received numerous HPD commendations and letters of appreciation from Holyoke citizens for coming to their aid whether in response to; recovering stolen property, neutralizing a public safety threat involving pipe bombs, homicide investigation, armed robbery, apprehension of burglary suspect, shootings, fire response, response to drug overdoses, response to train derailment and presentations to students,” says Lt. Moriarty.

Officer Welch also known as “The Edge” started his career with the Holyoke Police Department in January of 1983.  After getting appointed to a Full Time position in 1986, he became a Detective several years later in July of 1991 and then a District Court Officer in 2004.

On his service with the department, Lt. Moriarty had this to say, “Through his career Officer Welch has received numerous HPD commendations and letters of appreciation from Holyoke citizens for coming to their aid whether in response to; assault, medical emergency, automobile emergency, tornado emergency, drug investigation, armed robbery, shooting, homicide, runaway children, break ins, fire response, recovering stolen property, dealing with at risk youths and presenting a Constitution lesson to students. In 1990 Officer Welch was instrumental to the rescue of tenants from a building fire; he served for several years as the Juvenile Officer.”

Officer Welch served as President of the Massachusetts Juvenile Police Officers Association for a year from 1999 to 2000 and he also served the city of Holyoke not only as a Police Officer but as a City Councilor from 2007 to 2011.

The final retiree, Officer Spafford or “Herbie,” came into the Holyoke Police Department as a Reserve in January of 1983.  By September, 1984 he had become a Full Time police officer on the force.

“Through his career Officer Spafford has received numerous HPD commendations and letters of appreciation from Holyoke citizens for coming to their aid whether in response to; car accidents, burglary, robbery or prowler reports, disturbances, recovery of lost or stolen property, fire response, medical emergencies and shootings. Officer Spafford comes from a line of Law Enforcement, his father served as a Massachusetts State Police Trooper. In 1997 Officer Spafford rescued a tenant from a building fire putting his own life at risk,” explains Lt. Moriarty.

The Holyoke Police Department adds that each one of these officers contributed to making Holyoke a safer community and they will be greatly missed.


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