Call it a double hail to the chief. As is now tradition for him, Rumson Police Chief Scott Patterson dove into a cause in which he believes — Special Olympics NJ — and ended up being the top fundraiser for its 2020 Polar Bear Plunge at Seaside on Saturday. This was his second consecutive year of swimming success as top individual fundraiser.
The chief was bestowed the honor on Saturday, after he took the usually icy plunge on an unseasonably warm day. With a goal of $100, Chief Paterson raised $33,563, stats on the Special Olympics’/Plunge website said, the most raised by a single plunger. His team, the Little Silver Crocs, also garnered first place, surpassing a collective goal of $75,000 and bringing in $110,129.
“Chief Paterson would like to express his sincerest appreciation for the overwhelming support he received from the generous residents and benefactors who donated to the 2020 Polar Bear Plunge in Seaside Heights NJ, which benefited the Special Olympics,” a statement on the Rumson PD Facebook page said.
In the individual category, second to Paterson was Mike Laverty, with a stated goal of $36,500 and $33,147 of that raised. This was Laverty’s final plunge. Plunging for Special Olympics since 2004, having raised more than $500,000, Laverty said on his page that attaining this year’s goal makes it his highest since 2014. In third place in the individuals’ category was Grace Meek, with a stated goal of $30,000 and $23,851 of that raised. on Saturday in Seaside Heights.
In all, $2.4 million was raised for Special Olympics NJ this year via the plunge.
Congratulations, Chief Paterson!