Gov. Tom Wolf last Friday signed a bill to rename a bridge after fallen Philadelphia police officer Gary Skerski. Act 74 of 2017 designates a bridge on a portion of Castor Avenue as the Officer Gary Frank Skerski Memorial Bridge.
The 46-year-old was shot and killed on May 8, 2006, while responding to a reported armed robbery at Pat’s Café, in Northwood.
“Officer Skerski gave his life protecting our community,” said state Rep. Jason Dawkins, author of the bill. “We will never be able to fully repay him for his bravery. However, we can make sure his legacy lives on and his name is never forgotten. This bridge will also be a constant reminder of the countless sacrifices our men and women in blue make for us every day.”
Solomon Montgomery was arrested for the crime. He pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and received a sentence of life in prison, with no chance of parole, to avoid a possible death sentence.
Skerski, married with two children, was the 15th Police District community relations officer. He had served with the Philadelphia Police Department for 16 years. A bridge dedication is tentatively scheduled for May 8. ••