From blue pumpkins to blue lights to free lunch for first responders – this amazing community supports Officer Lehner and the BPD.

October 16, 2017

Written By

Mary Friona Celani

Buffalo Police Lieutenant, Jeff Rinaldo calls the past few days an emotional roller coaster. Four full days of searching for missing Buffalo Police Officer, Craig Lehner.  It has been incredibly painful for the first responders, divers, members of various departments – as they search the murky waters for one of their own.

I can’t imagine what it’s been like for Officer Lehner’s family. And friends. It must be an excruciating wait.

This tragedy doesn’t end there.

It has been a sad few days for so many in this community  who are following the search. Waiting for details; any new information. So many feeling helpless. And now, four days later, hopeless.  But some folks are trying to do something about it; showing support to the men and women of the Buffalo Police Department as they search for Officer Lehner, vowing to never leave their man behind.

A Buffalonian has painted pumpkins blue to support Officer Lehner. Alison Mary has posted on her Facebook page – that she wants to do something, too. Something to make a difference. To show support.

“We have blue pumpkins available to show unity and support in search of Officer Craig Lehner.  Contact me and we can make arraignments. I am just asking for a small donation so we can keep this going!”






The owners of Dirty Bird Chicken and Waffles offered free lunch to any police officers or first responders helping with the search. How amazing is that. They parked their truck at Waterfront Village in Buffalo on Monday and said, come and get it  – that is BUFFALOVE.





Another Buffalonian is asking folks to put a blue light on for Officer Lehner. A Facebook Event is posted asking for prayers and for everyone to light the town blue. Organizers have posted this on the event page,  “For this week let’s replace our porch lights with a BLUE light bulb in solidarity of our missing officer, to show our support for him, and all those involved in the search efforts. These brave men and woman sacrifice their lives daily, and some even volunteering their time, putting in countless hours to bring this to closure and to find our missing in action dive officer.”






The Peace Bridge was bathed in blue.








Buffalo City Hall shines blue, too.




Departments from all around WNY and beyond have showed support on social media…

Erie County Sheriff’s Office tweeted, “With heavy hearts yet strong determination ECSONY1 starts day 4 of search for our LE brother Craig Lehner. Will stay as long as we have to.”

Kenmore Police Department tweeted, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Officer Craig Lehner and our brothers and sisters of BPD.”

And there are many, many more.

That’s the thing about Buffalo. When something bad happens, we all feel it. We all want to do something to help. That’s why we are the City of Good Neighbors. That’s what this community is all about.

Praying they find their man very soon. Praying for Officer Lehner’s family, friends, and fellow officers.


About Me

Welcome to Totally Buffalo! My name is Mary Friona-Celani and I am the creator of this site! After spending 20 years in the Buffalo media, I moved on to focus on my beautiful family. Now, the time has come for a new project. I was ready for something new. Something mine.
I am born and raised in WNY and my pride runs deep. My husband, Scott and I are very happy to be raising our four daughters here.






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