Community appreciates (Meditation Group member): muggers’ Nemesis, NY Daily News, 1981 Dec 27

Filed under americas | media coverage Text & Photos | Tributes and Expressions of appreciation


Gentle giant becomes

a nemesis of muggers

Below find

  •   article in the NY daily news and the
  • remarks by recipient of commendation from local community association.


Adhiratha Kevin Keefe, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) staff member, member of the Peace Meditation Group at the UN, Sri Chinmoy Center NGO, Jamaica Hill Community Association,

when commended Gives “special attention to police who responded quickly to calls for assistance and offered their support”

Daily News

New Yorks Picture Newspaper


      At 6-FOOT -6 and with almost 200 pounds of muscle, ( Adhiratha ) Kevin Keefe, 34, of Jamaica has become an awesome foe of street muggers- During the past year, he has participated in thwarting five robberies most of them near his 160th St apartment

.. In recognition of his efforts, Keefe has received a commendation from the Jamaica Hill Community Association “for demonstration of social concern and citizenship and for special efforts to maintain the welfare of the community,”

Keefe, a member of the Sri Chinmoy Center in Jamaica (and Peace Meditation Group at the U.N.), credits the philosophy of Chinmoy, which stresses physical fitness and social concern, for his motivation in coming to the aid of so many victims without fear for his own safety.

“I also want to give special attention to the police, who on two· occasions responded quickly to calls for assistance and offered their support, ” Keefe said “I know that ours is a big neighborhood to cover,” be added. “The number of calls received by our police makes it difficult to be everywhere they are needed.”

Keefe, a Jogger who does a 26.2-mile marathon in 3 1/2 hours, caught one alleged mugger with the aid of his two roommates, Scott Shamesman 26, and Matthew Hogan, 31.

“I was coming up Normal Road ‘where it leads into 16Oth St., when I heard someone screaming and hollering,” said Keefe, a supervisory office employee at the United Nations.

.. At first, 1 thought it was a family quarrel, but then these two guys started running away and a third guy was yelling, ‘Stop, thief.’ I took off . after them and we raced for about a quarter of a mile before one of them just kind of collapsed with ehaustion. The other mugger Jumped into a Car and got away.”

At the same time, Shamesman and Hogan, who were In the area at the time, heard the commotion and ran to Keefe’s aid, not that ,the towering. man seemed to need much help.

A 14 year old boy, who also had joined the chase on his bicycle, spotted a handgun sticking out of a pocket of the alleged mugger and warned the men.

“We took the gun off the guy,” Keefe said. “When the victim came on the scene, he (the victim) still bad an impression mark on his forehead where the mugger had stuck the gun barrel on him.”

On another recent occasion, Keefe was asleep In his bedroom when be heard noises being made by three ear strippers on the street outside. “I woke up my roommates (Sbamesman and Hogan) and we caught one of them after he threatened with a tire Iron Keefe said.”

Despite the danger of his spontaneous, rescue work, Keefe said he hasn’t given any thought to arming himself with a weapon. I don’t think that’s necessary”, the easy going giant said.


Acceptance of Commendation

presented by Jamaica Hill Community Association

to Adhiratha K. Keefe on 15 December 1981 8pm

at the Margret Tietz Nursing Home

“to show gratitude of friends and neighbors in the community, for efforts to maintain a safe neighborhood”

In receiving this commendation I would like to make a few brief remarks:

First, I want to express gratitude to my two roommates who on two recent occasions joined me in interrupting and pursuing persons who had just committed a crime in our neighborhood. I am grateful to Scott Shamesman and Mathew Hogan for their efforts to maintain a safe neighborhood – and also for personally encouraging me by their immediate and spontaneous assistance. This feeling I also have for our neighbors who came out of their homes to offer us support. ”

Second, I am grateful to you and the communiy who are offering me this commendation. I do appreciate it personally and more importantly I appreciate the award’s symbolism. It shows the high value the Jamaica Hill Community Association placed on service to the community by individual members. I believe it is only by an attitude of Service that we can have a safe community. Your encouragement to me and other members of the Jamaica area who benifit our neighborhood is important to build a sense of true community.

Also, I want to give special attention to the police who on two occasions responded quickly to calls for assistance and offered their support. I know that ours is a big neighborhood to cover and the number of calls received by our police makes it difficult to be everywhere they are needed.

Finally, the person that I feel most grateful for and the one who is really deserving of this award, which I value highly, is Sri Chinmoy. His love for this community and devotion to the principles of honest civic duty – and self-giving are a constant inspiration to me. The principles and actions he and his students, my friends and colleagues, support, like the good goals and actions of the Jamaica Hill Community Association, are the necessary ingredient for a strong and safe community and city.

Thank You.


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