UPDATED: North Bergen Commissioner of Public Safety Theresa Ferraro passes away

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Updated with remarks from Mayor Nick Sacco on the passing of Theresa Ferraro, the North Bergen Commissioner of Public Safety who was the first woman to be elected to the office in 1999.

Theresa Ferraro

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Ferraro, 90, was also the chairwoman of the township housing authority, as well as a member of the North Bergen Democratic Committee for over 30 years.

In 1995, she was honored as the Hudson County Senior of the Year and also had the Theresa V. Ferraro Senior Building named after her in 2001.

Ferraro, who had not attended a board of commissioners meeting in months, was replaced Sacco’s re-election ticket back in February by Board of Education President Julio Marenco.

Sacco announced at last week’s board of commissioners meeting that Ferraro was rushed to the hospital on March 10 due to a problem with one of her lungs, noting that she was in good spirits at the time.

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Sacco acknowledged Ferraro’s passing on his Facebook page earlier this morning:

Sacco-Ferraro

Sacco also released a prepared statement to the media a few minutes ago.

“North Bergen is a safer, better place because of Theresa Ferraro’s leadership and we are all incredibly saddened to have to say goodbye to her today,” Sacco said.

“She leaves behind an incredible legacy and we will always remember Theresa’s tenacity, her pride in North Bergen and her love of her family and the community she served for so long.”

In a prepared statement from when it was announced that Marenco would be running on Sacco’s re-election ticket, Ferraro reflected on her accomplishments in office.

“Representing the people of North Bergen for the last 16 years has been a wonderful, enlightening and truly rewarding experience,” Ferraro said.

“I take great pride in the growth of our police department during my tenure, especially its diversity with more women officers than ever before and almost 60% being of Hispanic heritage, and its effectiveness with crime rates dropping and our neighborhoods safer than ever.”