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Friday, August 15, 2014

Nashua PD issues ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’ to other departments

NASHUA – Deputy Police Chief Andrew Lavoie was still on vacation Thursday morning when he returned home and checked his email. One message caught his eye; soon he was putting on his uniform with plans to head down to headquarters.

“I saw the email and thought, ‘I can’t miss this,’” Lavoie said Thursday afternoon, moments after he and 35 fellow NPD officers each picked up full buckets of ice water and dumped them over their heads. ...

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NASHUA – Deputy Police Chief Andrew Lavoie was still on vacation Thursday morning when he returned home and checked his email. One message caught his eye; soon he was putting on his uniform with plans to head down to headquarters.

“I saw the email and thought, ‘I can’t miss this,’” Lavoie said Thursday afternoon, moments after he and 35 fellow NPD officers each picked up full buckets of ice water and dumped them over their heads.

At 3:10 p.m., right between first and second shifts, Nashua became the first police department around, and perhaps in the state, to take the so-called “Ice Bucket Challenge,” the ALS-awareness stunt that has gone viral since the family of 29-year-old Peter Frates doused themselves two weeks ago.

Frates, a former Boston College baseball player diagnosed with ALS in 2012, unknowingly touched off the rapid spread of the challenge when he posted his own ice bucket video online, accompanied by the song, “Ice, Ice Baby,” and issued a challenge.

According to the rules, if the individuals or groups challenged online don’t accept within 24 hours, they’re asked to donate to ALS research.

Locally, that means that officers from Hudson, Manchester and N.H. State Police need to get together an ice bucket event, because Nashua officers challenged those three departments moments before drenching themselves Thursday afternoon.

“I saw it online, and got the idea to call out the other departments before we get called out,” said Nashua Officer Mike Dore, who organized the event with Officers Mike Sullivan, Dan Archambault, Dan Hodges and Joshua Trefry.

Thirty-five officers across the rank spectrum took part, from Lavoie to patrolmen. Some came in on their day off, others participated after their shift ended or before it began.

“It’s a great cause,” Dore said. “It’s the least we can do,” added Lavoie, whose decision to come in while on vacation also cost him a week’s worth of whiskers.

“I had a pretty good vacation beard going, but I had to shave it early,” he said, referring to NPD regulations that state when an officer’s uniform goes on, any facial hair must come off.

“At least my wife was happy.”

Dean Shalhoup can be reached at 594-6443 or dshalhoup@nashuatelegraph.com. Also follow Shalhoup on Twitter (@Telegraph_DeanS).