Officer puts ‘Service Above Self’

Beacon Falls police Officer Caroline O’Bar, right, receives the Beacon Falls Rotary Club’s Service Above Self award from past club President Joe Dowdell, left, and President Karen Ambari Longo, center, Aug. 29 at The River's Edge Pub & Grille. –LUKE MARSHALL

Beacon Falls police Officer Caroline O’Bar, right, receives the Beacon Falls Rotary Club’s Service Above Self award from past club President Joe Dowdell, left, and President Karen Ambari Longo, center, Aug. 29 at The River’s Edge Pub & Grille. –LUKE MARSHALL

BEACON FALLS — Beacon Falls Rotary Club President Karen Ambari Longo stood before club members last week at The River’s Edge Pub & Grille and told the story of a police officer who went above and beyond for a local woman.

The woman had called the police department because she was running low on food to feed her children, Logan said. The officer immediately reached out to businesses and service organizations in town in order to provide for this family.

“Within hours there are grocery store gift cards available, the oil bill is paid, so the family will have heat in the plummeting temperatures of winter,” Longo said.

The officer in Longo’s story is Caroline O’Bar.

In addition to helping the family with its immediate needs, O’Bar collected presents for the children so they would have something to open on Christmas, Longo said.

“This is just one example of the many, many calls Caroline gets. And, by doing what she does, changes lives for the better,” Longo said.

The club honored O’Bar, who has been a police officer since 1990 and joined the Beacon Falls Police Department in 2002, Aug. 29 with the Service Above Self award.

O’Bar, 48, said she first became a police officer because she wanted to make a difference in her community. She currently runs a toy drive at Christmas. She also collects food at Thanksgiving, Easter baskets at Easter, and backpacks for children going to school.

“She goes above and beyond what she needs to do,” Beacon Falls Rotary Club past President Joe Dowdell said. “We can’t ask for a better person in our town.”

O’Bar said she was honored to receive the award, but doing things to help others is just part of who she is.

“That’s the way I grew up,” O’Bar said. “My parents were always helping people. It’s just part of what I do. I do a lot of volunteer work. We were brought up to help others.”

Beacon Falls police Lt. Eddie Rodriguez said the department is lucky to have O’Bar.

“She’s a very dedicated individual. She spends a lot of time making sure the needy people in town get what they deserve,” Rodriguez said.

O’Bar thanked the Rotary Club, saying she would not be able to do what she does without the club’s help.

“Whenever I call the Rotary Club you guys step up to the plate, above and beyond. There is never a ‘we can’t help you out,’ it is always ‘what else do you need,’” O’Bar said. “Last night, I went to a call and I had four kids in need. I was able to make phone calls to my resources to supply this family with food and to supply these kids, who started school today, with four backpacks full of school supplies. I wouldn’t be able to do that if it wasn’t for the assistance and the donations I receive from the Rotary.”