Ted Silva, 58, of Punta Gorda, Fla. — a reserve officer with the Lake Placid Police Department and a volunteer for the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office — passed away Saturday afternoon shortly after returning home from the funeral of murdered CCSO deputy Sgt. Michael Wilson
Silva’s 23-year-old son, Kenneth, said his dad’s goal had been to become a police officer. “He definitely fulfilled his lifelong dream,” he said. “But I hate to see him go.”
Silva had been a reserve officer with the Lake Placid Police Department since May 2010. He was able to coordinate his schedules between Lake Placid and the Sheriff’s Office, allowing him to help both agencies as much as possible.
In Lake Placid, Silva assisted with CPR and first aid classes and helped with event security for the Caladium Festival and the Lake Placid Arts & Crafts Country Fair. He also completed over 600 hours of post-academy training, which included what Chief of Police James Fansler described as “intense courses,” such as firearms instruction.
“Since his time with the Lake Placid Police Department, officer Silva strived to assist in any capacity,” Fansler stated in a letter to the media Monday. “Ted was a great asset to the department and will sorely be missed.”
Family members said Silva died of a sudden heart attack.
Kenneth Silva said his dad made himself a hot dog, grabbed a banana and was preparing for a shower when he collapsed in his bedroom. “He hit his head on the dresser on his way down,” Kenneth said. “It was just kind of spur of the moment.”
Kenneth didn’t think his dad had a history of heart disease, but said his dad kept his medical history mostly private. Kenneth pointed out his dad was known to have a bad back, but he stood through Wilson’s funeral at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center because “he put everybody first before himself.”
Silva had been a volunteer adviser for the last nine years with the CCSO-sponsored Explorer program, where he introduced kids to law enforcement.
“We deeply regret hearing of the passing of Ted Silva,” said Charlotte County Sheriff Bill Prummell. “He has been a valued volunteer here at the Sheriff’s Office working with our Explorer program. We send our sympathies and prayers to the members of Ted’s family.”
The Explorer program is an introduction to the police profession for youths ages 14 through 20, according to the CCSO website. Volunteer coordinator Sgt. Gregory Kalosis said Silva spent three or four hours several times a month teaching basic techniques to Charlotte County’s youth while with Explorer Post 29.
“He put in numerous hours of his own time to help these kids,” said Kalosis. “What he brought was invaluable.”
Kalosis said Silva also assisted the CCSO with fundraising, traffic control and parking at events.
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The son of Kenneth and Isabelle Silva, he was born Jan. 13, 1955, in Far Rockaway, N.Y.
In 1974, Silva married Cindy Silverman and they had three children. Ted remarried in 1993 and he and Ann Dilione Silva had three children. He spent more than a decade as the supervisor of the X-ray technicians at Mercy Hospital in Miami. His proudest achievement, however, was graduating from the Basic Law Enforcement Academy with his son, Kenneth, and working for the Lake Placid Police Department as a reserve police officer.
Officer Silva is survived by his wife, Ann, and former wife, Cindy; children, Phil (Elizabeth) Quigley, Nicole (Guillermo) Gonzalez, Danielle Silverman, Kimberly (Edward) Rodriguez, Kenneth (Chance) Silva, Kristina (Russell Thibodeau) Silva and Suzanne Silva; and grandchildren, Karina and Joseph Gonzalez, Sofia Rodriguez, Alexander Thibodeau, Ashley, Ryan and Lexis Quigley.
Funeral services for Officer Silva will be held at The Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 211 W. Charlotte Ave., Punta Gorda
today (Wednesday) at 11:30 a.m.