Lieutenant Thomas J. Payne was appointed as a "Special Patrolman" by New Rochelle on September 12th , 1910. He Was appointed as Patrolman on April 1st, 1911. On November 11th, 1922 he was promoted to Sergeant, and promoted to Lieutenant on September 1st, 1929. Lieutenant Payne died on September 23rd, 1929 at the age of forty-four. His death was attributed to injuries he received on June 1st, when he was hit by a truck while investigating an auto accident. "He was a man for whom I had the highest regard, a man who did his duty in every circumstance," said Chief George P. Smith. "He was trustworthy, honest and well-thought of by everyone in the Department. His death has made a profound impression on all of us."
After a funeral mass at Blessed Sacrament Church, Lieutenant Thomas J. Payne was laid to rest at Holy Sepulcher Cemetery.
Each year, as part of National Police Week each May, the City of New Rochelle remembers the 8 New Rochelle police officers who died in the line of duty.