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Hero Down: NYPD Officer Gladstone Haynes Dies While Swimming In Waterfall On Vacation

Orinduik Falls, GUYANA – New York Police Department (NYPD) Officer Gladstone Haynes drowned on Oct. 30 while on vacation in Guyana.

The 43-year-old off-duty officer was swimming at Orinduik Falls with his children’s mother, 34-year-old Alicia Vassell, when he disappeared beneath the water at approximately 3 p.m., Demerara Waves reported.

“Enquiries disclosed that Gladstone was swimming below the Orinduik Falls in the water, which was high and streaming heavily at the time,” police said. “He reportedly went under the surface of the water and disappeared.”

Officer Haynes’ body was recovered by a search party at approximately 6:30 a.m. on Nov. 2, Demerara Waves reported.

Investigators said they believe he drowned.

Officer Haynes, who was born in Guyana, was celebrating Vassell’s birthday with her when the tragic incident occurred, Demerara Waves reported.

“It is with great sadness to announce the 70 family lost one of our officers too soon while vacationing in Guyana this week,” the NYPD 70th Precinct tweeted on Nov. 2. “Officer Gladstone Haynes was a good, humble man who protected New Yorkers for nearly 18 years. May he Rest In Peace and may God bless the Haynes family.”

Officer Haynes served the NYPD for 17 years, and had been assigned to the 70th Precinct since 2017, the New York Post reported.

His father served in the Guyanese police force and inspired him to serve his community as an NYPD officer, FOX News reported.

“He loved his job,” said Officer Haynes’ cousin, Allison Lawrence. “He always wanted to be a police officer because his father was a police officer.”

Lawrence said her cousin was “kind-hearted and loving,” FOX News reported.

“He’s a hard-working young man who would give you the clothes off his back,” she added. “We’re taking it hard. We’re praying for him.”

Officer Haynes leaves behind his five children, all of whom range in age from two to 15, the Prospect Heights-Crown Heights Patch reported.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of New York Police Department Officer Gladstone Haynes, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Written by Holly Matkin


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