North Penn PAL Alumni Celebrate Mentor
On September 21st, more than sixty North Penn PAL alumni gathered together to celebrate the legacy of their former PAL Center Director and mentor, Retired Officer Harold Barnes. Harold, as he was affectionately known to youngsters, served as a PAL Officer from 1968 to 1984 when he retired from the Philadelphia Police Department.
Harold is a community leader in its truest form. Though his PAL center was bustling with children, he gave each individual attention and encouragement, stressing the importance of family, community and good character, above all. Harold brought neighborhoods together in the PAL center by teaching and requiring respect. He instructed the children to leave their differences outside if they wanted to participate in all that PAL had to offer.
North Penn PAL alumni, now fathers and mentors themselves, organized the celebration to show their appreciation for Harold’s dedication and compassion many years ago. Attendees, including Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers, shared touching and humorous memories of their childhood at PAL. Harold accepted their praise and thanks graciously and he expressed pride in the gentlemen standing before him.
PAL congratulates Retired Officer Barnes and all current and former PAL Center Directors for their dedication to improving the quality of life for youth in Philadelphia.