They had all heard the old classic description of the job. Hours and hours of routine broken up with a few seconds of terror or trauma. They had went to school and lived in the County all of their lives. They had seen public officials that had carefully done their best to serve the public intrest, fall from public favor, because of a decision or action, that was not popular. They realised that their lives both public and private would be examined closely and the slightest flaw would be the topic of coffee shop commentary. They knew their families would also be scrutinized, yet, they somehow had a desire to help their fellow man.
They had not taken this step into public service lightly, nor was it hastily considered.
They had went through a lenghty application process with many steps that were mostly mandated by state law. This vetting process had seemed endless and they had seen other applicants fall by the wayside as they continued through the process. There was the background investigation, where kinfolks, friends, neighbors, classmates and others were asked how they thought they might perform as a police officer. Where current and past employers were asked about dependability, trustworthyness, honesty, loyalty, and on and on.
There was the physical examination with all of those personal questions and answers coupled with an extensive medical history review.
There was the drivers history examination and the two part Psycological evaluation, and more, there seemed to be always more.
Hours and days away from family and friends began to pile up as they worked on achieving the goal of becoming prepared to serve their fellow man. If they hadn’t realized it before, they began to know that they were getting ready to participate in a calling of the highest order.
Finally, after the tuition, uniforms and all of that equipment was ready, they took a deep breath, exhaled slowly, and realized that now the training began. To fail at that meant that all of the previous effort was for naught.
Evenings at Rich Mountain Community College, weekends consumed by weapons training and defensive tactics, followed by practical exercises made the weeks roll by fast.
Then it was, at long last, graduation day. The speeches, awards and the congratulations, handshakes and photographs were soon over. It was time to go to work.
But wait, they already have a full time job. You know, the one that they support their families with. So, there they are, all ready to serve the puiblic, holding down a full time job, and trying to balance time at home with the family, against their tremendous drive to serve their fellow man.
The City of Grannis was proud to sponsor four such well qualified and driven individuals to the recent RMCC Law Enforcement class. In the photo the Mayor and City Council members welcome the new Part time Police Officers.
Standing, left to right: Officer Chris Lee, Officer Randy Jewell, Officer Clint Bell and Officer Steve Fortner.
Seated, left to right: Council member Ricky Kesterson, Council member Donnie Apple, Mayor Elvin Harrison, Council member Debbie Melton, Council member Jimmy Hunter and Council member Varnell Frachiseur.