SPRINGFIELD – Springfield Police Lt. Maurice “Mossy” Kearney will retire from the Springfield Police Department after 35 years of service on July 31 and honored the man who was his first commanding officer, Capt. Walter Rooke, with a ride-along on July 28. Kearney said that Rooke “was the reason I became a cop.”
Kearney entered the force when he was 25 years old after working as a corrections officer. He was assigned, like all new officers, to the midnight to 8 a.m. shift that Rooke commanded. The two men worked more than a decade with each other. Rooke has been long retired and served 42 years as a Springfield officer.
“He’s one of the best,” Kearney said of his former boss. He added, “Under his tutelage we became the cops we are today.”
Rooke is the father of City Councilor Tim Rooke and Attorney Thomas Rooke.
Kearney said that although retired from the department, he will continue working in law enforcement.