New York police officer who never took a sick day in his 42-year career dies

A New York police officer who never took a sick day in his 42-year career has died, just a few weeks before he was to retire, US media reported.

Sergeant Francis "Buddy" Murnane died of an apparent heart attack on March 15, just weeks away from his 63rd birthday, Newsday reported.

The New York Police Department says Murnane was its longest-serving active officer.

According to the New York Post, Murnane never once took a sick day despite being "kicked, punched and shot at" over the course of his career.

Murnane worked on nearly every major case in the last 20 years, including the 2011 killing of Brooklyn Officer Peter Figoski and the fatal stabbing of a six-year-old boy in an elevator last summer, according to the Post.

"If you are the bad guy, the worst of the worst ... Buddy Murnane has been part of the team looking for you to bring you to justice," then-Councilman James Oddo said at a 2010 City Hall ceremony, according to the Staten Island Advance. "He has truly put community, city and country above all."

Said Terence Murnane, a retired NYPD detective: "He wasn't just my big brother. He was my best friend. He was also the person I went to whenever I was stumped on a case because he had seen and done it all so many times. He always knew the answer."