Denny Mangan
Dec 29, 2012

Denny ManganDennis J. Mangan, 63, of Camillus, passed away Saturday at home. A lifetime resident of Syracuse and Camillus, he was a 1966 graduate of Central Tech and attended OCC. Dennis was a police sergeant for the city of Syracuse Police Department for 28 years, retiring in 1998.
A member of the Retired Police Association and Fraternal Order of Police, he also served in the Army National Guard. He was a communicant of St. Joseph's Church and Corpus Christi Church.
Summers were spent at his cottage on Pillar Point. There, he enjoyed spending time with his family and riding his jet ski on Lake Ontario. Dennis was vice president of the Tibbetts Point Lighthouse Assn. in Cape Vincent. An avid Jimmy Buffett fan, he enjoyed playing guitar, ukulele and steel drums. He enjoyed cruising to any place warm with his wife.
Dennis was predeceased by his parents, Francis and Theresa Mangan.
Surviving are his wife of 38 years, the former Ann Flynn; daughters, Kellie Mangan of Camillus, Shannon (Jeff) Dunbar of King Ferry and Colleen (James) Marasia of Syracuse; his beloved cat, Scruffy McGruggles; and a large, extended family.
Dennis was also eagerly awaiting the birth of his two grandchildren.
Relatives and friends may call Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Buranich Funeral Home, 5431 W. Genesee St., Camillus. A funeral Mass will be celebrated 10:30 a.m. Thursday in St. Joseph's Church.
Contributions may be made in memory of Dennis to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital , 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

Published in Syracuse Post Standard on December 30, 2012

This picture of Denny was taken when he was a CID Investigator in the 70's. He later made sergeant and was working in uniform when he sustained a hostile fire gunshot wound to the leg and went out on a disability, below is a followup story run on January 2nd.

Syracuse police officer, wounded by fleeing gunman in 1996, dies at age 63 in Camillus

Syracuse, NY -- A retired Syracuse police sergeant who was shot in the leg by a fleeing man in 1996 and walked with a cane the rest of his life died Saturday from heart failure, his family said. He was 63. Dennis Mangan, of Camillus, was remembered by a colleague as a true professional who devoted 28 years to law enforcement and dedicated himself to his wife, Ann, and their three daughters.

Lt. John Corbett, now executive officer of the department's special investigations division, said he workedDenny with Mangan as a patrol officer and served as his partner on certain days. "He was very knowledgeable guy," Corbett said. "He knew the police business in and out. As years went by, he took a lot of younger cops under his wing and taught them the proper way to do things." In 1976, Mangan was given a departmental commendation for restraining a suicidal man on the fourth-floor ledge of an apartment building. He kept the man from jumping until others arrived to bring him down.

Until he was shot, Mangan stayed in shape by jogging seven to 10 miles a day, often fitting it around the odd late-night hours of police work, said his wife, Ann. Since he was a child, Mangan had wanted to be in law enforcement, she said. He told her he loved to play cops and robbers. "From the time he was young, he wanted to be a policeman," she said. "He wanted to be the good guy." Mangan's career -- and his life -- changed abruptly on Feb. 1, 1996. He had planned to spend his lunch break playing racquetball at the gym in police headquarters. Instead, he took a call for help with a crash on Amidon Drive in the city's Valley neighborhood. The driver, Henry Breland III, then 20, of Syracuse, had made a "threatening move" at an officer who asked to see Breland's driver's license, according to an account at the time from District Attorney William Fitzpatrick.

Breland struck the officer and fled. He ran past Clary Middle School, through Academy Green Park and into the yard of 9 Academy Green, where he shot responding Officer Anthony Martino in the shoulder. Martino fell to the ground, dropping his gun and police radio. Mangan did not realize Breland was still armed when he took up the chase. Breland shot Mangan in the right leg, splitting his thigh bone. Breland was caught after hiding under a porch. When he emerged, crouched in a shooting position, several officers fired their weapons. One bullet struck Breland in the leg.

The shootings took place in the yard of the former house of County Executive Joanie Mahoney, then an assistant district attorney. She ran to help the officers after the shooting. Both Mangan and Martino underwent emergency surgery. Martino was eventually able to return to work; Mangan was not. Breland was found guilty of trying to kill Mangan and Martino, as well as two other officers and a civilian at whom he also fired shots. He was sentenced in 1997 to 125 years to life in prison.

Mangan walked with a cane the rest of his life and never returned to his former job. He retired from the police department in 1998.

Corbett said Mangan still attended police gatherings and volunteered for charity golf tournaments, among other events.

"He was a cop's cop," Corbett said. "This guy was dedicated to the job and dedicated to his family. He has three daughters, he would always talk about them. He served very honorably."

No longer able to jog, Mangan spent his retirement dabbling in many hobbies, including playing the harmonica, guitar, steel drums and, as a big Jimmy Buffett fan, the ukulele, his wife said. He also juggled.

Ann Mangan said he never had regrets about the day he was shot.

"He never 'woulda, coulda, shoulda,'" she said. "He wasn't one to second guess himself about anything in life."

Mangan died Saturday from heart failure while sleeping, his wife said. Calling hours are today from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Buranich Funeral Home, 5431 W. Genesee St., Camillus. There will be a funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. Joseph's Church, 5600 W. Genesee St.

Corbett will lead an honor guard during the calling hours and funeral Mass.

 

Published in Syracuse Post Standard on January 2, 2013 - The photos were provided by Denny's family, Story by staff writer Douglass Dowty..