Changing of the Guard, PAL Officer Ernie Rehr Retires

Few people in this world spend their working lifetime committed to one single institution. For Officer Ernie Rehr, a 35 year veteran of the Philadelphia Police force there was rarely any doubt. Once Ernie was selected as the Rizzo PAL Center Officer in 1990 he quickly became a part of the fabric of the surrounding communities of Port Richmond, Fishtown, and Kensington. With a big smile and an even larger heart, Ernie played a vital role on coaching multiple generations of boys and girls. As a mentor to many and a role model to all, his service over the years is appreciated on a level words can not do justice.     

Over the decades Ernie fostered a wide range of youth development programs out of the Rizzo Center: Perhaps most notably the PAL Wrestling Club. From 1990 to 2009, this program was the only youth wrestling program that operated within the city limits that did not charge participants a registration fee. Eliminating the cost-barrier of entry introduced thousand of youth that would never have been accessible otherwise. Without any prior experience in the sport Ernie embraced the effort of coach Ed Schneider. Unbeknownst to them at the time they laid the groundwork to ensure a legacy was created. In 2009 Beat the Streets partnered with PAL as the leader in their respective space to expand wrestling throughout Philadelphia. 

Ernie’s official retirement is scheduled for Friday November 7th, 2019. Please join us in congratulating Ernie on a tremendously successful career. Ernie plans to enjoy retirement spending time with his loving wife Robin, and spoiling his beautiful grandchildren.

On behalf of the BTSP Board of Directors and Executive Staff we would like to extend our sincere thanks and gratitude to Officer Ernie for his decades worth of service.