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Daniel Rodríguez: 1964—: Former Law Enforcement Officer, Singer Biography

Abandoned Singing Career To Support Family, Became New York's "singing Cop", Launched A Full-time Singing Career

Daniel Rodríguez: 1964—: Former law enforcement officer, singer.

Twelve days after the horrific terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, on New York's World Trade Center, New York City police officer Daniel Rodríguez took the stage at Yankee Stadium's mass memorial service, "Prayer for America," and sang "God Bless America." The poignancy of a uniformed officer singing this most patriotic of anthems was a salve for a nation gripped in mourning. As the Los Angeles Times described it, "Daniel Rodríguez put his arms around America and dried its tears with his voice." Over the next several months Rodríguez sang at over 100 memorial services, including those for 23 officers he had worked with. It was not easy. "Sometimes, it was all I could do to choke it down and go forward," he told Florida Today.

Rodríguez did go forward, singing at the World Series, the Winter Olympics, and the White House. He appeared on dozens of television programs, landed a record contract, and released a CD. In honoring those killed during the terrorist attacks, NYPD's "Singing Cop" had inadvertently become famous. However, he was no overnight success. As he often reminded critics who dismissed his popularity as a fad, he has been singing since he was 12 years old. "People will always know me as the singing cop, but I want them to recognize me as a singer," he told the Hispanic Magazine website. "I want them to know that I wasn't a cop who started singing; I was a singer who became a cop." And to those that imply his fame is solely the result of the September 11 tragedies, he is both reflective and blunt. "If you look at it in certain ways, it does seem illogical," he told the Bergen County, New Jersey, Record. "But out of great tragedy comes great blessings." He concluded, "I've been given the gift to sing. I sing for those who have lost loved ones. If people want to say this came from tragedy, fine." For Rodríguez, his new-found fame was a dream come true. In December of 2002, he left the police force and embarked upon a full-time singing career, telling the Los Angeles Times, "I am exactly where I always wanted to be."

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