PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Family, friends, the community and fellow emergency responders will bid farewell to Pittsfield Police Lt. Michael Winston on Friday morning.
The 23-year veteran of the force died on Jan. 5 while vacationing in the state of Florida.
Calling hours will be held tonight, Thursday, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Dwyer Funeral Home at 776 North St. A Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted tomorrow, Friday, at 10 a.m. at St. Charles' Church.
A large contingent of law enforcement officers, fire personnel, and emergency medical personnel from throughout Berkshire County and beyond will be in attendance to pay their respects. A marching and vehicle procession will take place to transport and accompany Winston from the funeral home to the church at 89 Briggs Ave.
The procession will begin from Dwyer Funeral home at approximately 9 a.m. and proceed north on North Street, west (left) onto Pontoosuc Avenue and end at the church. Anticipated time of arrival at the church is 9:50 a.m.
North Street will be closed from Tyler to Charles Street immediately before and during the procession.
Traffic on the west side will be detoured over Wahconah Street. Upon the start of the procession, southbound traffic will be shut down at North and Pontoosuc until the procession has passed. Signage and detail officers will be stationed at all intersecting roadways to assist the public.
Berkshire Medical Center has been notified that all transport vehicles should enter BMC via Wahconah and Charles street entrances.
The closing of North Street will last approximately 45 minutes and the roadways will reopen upon the completion of the procession.
Roadways in the area of St. Charles' Church to include Briggs, Pontoosuc, and possibly Lenox will be closed to through traffic during the services for Winston as these roadways will be used for the parking of vehicles participating in the procession. These roadways will reopen upon the completion of the services. Access will be allowed for residents of these roadways.
Residents are asked to seek alternate routes for their destinations during the hours of 9 through 10 a.m.
The highly decorated officer began his career in 1994 and rose rapidly, being promoted to sergeant in 2000 and lieutenant in 2002. Winston served in a number of capacities and was commander of the Berkshire County Special Response Team for the past 14 years. He was named the Terry Donnelly Police Officer of the Year in 1998 and receiving an Honorable Service Unit Citation for supporting the U.S. Secret Service when first lady Michelle Obama visited Pittsfield in 2013. One of his favorite yearly activities was representing the department on Pittsfield Public Schools Read Across America Day and he was long involved in local youth baseball.
Outpouring of respect for the Lanesborough resident began in Fort Myers, Fla., where a police detail stood vigil and an escort of Fort Myers officers accompanied Winston's casket to the airport. Members of the Connecticut State Police were on hand at Bradley International Airport to aid with the transfer and the Bradley Fire Department rendered honors.
On entering Lee, the Lee Police Department was there also to render honors and Winston was escorted back to Pittsfield with a long line of flashing lights.