NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - Former NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly has released his memoir, 'Vigilance: My Life Serving America and Protecting it's Empire City.' In it, he describes a terrifying moment as a young boy that ultimately shaped his illustrious career.
“I was with another boy in Central Park. We lived a block away from the park on the Upper West Side. We were grabbed by a group of older kids and our shoes were taken, a baseball bat was held. It stayed with me. I think it helped to sensitize me as far as victims are concerned. It was traumatic. I was only eight at the time," said Kelly.
The husband and father worked his way up the ladder holding every position possible within the NYPD and obtaining three graduate degrees in the process.
"The department is very supportive as far as education is concerned," said Kelly.
During his 12 years under the Bloomberg administration, Kelly and the police department were instrumental in the rebuilding of lower Manhattan following the September 11 terror attacks. Plans for the building that would later become 1 World Trade were significantly altered after Kelly shared his concerns with the developers.
"As the plans went forward, people wanted to make a statement that we can’t be coward by terrorism. Tthe building was going to be an all –glass structure on the corner of Vesey St. We in the police department were very concerned. We brought in counter terrorism experts, they impressed the other side with the fact that the building was very vulnerable," said Kelly.