CMPD Promotions and Hiring Ceremony
This morning I had the great honor to attend a ceremony in city council chambers at which Costa Mesa Police Chief Tom Gazsi recognized the promotions of several staffers, the hiring of others and the retirement of two men with accumulated services years nearly equal to the age of our city. The auditorium was packed with well-wishers, residents and city staffers.
Fifteen officers/civilian employees were sworn-in for their new jobs by Interim City Clerk Brenda Green, ranging from new Captain Rob Sharpnack to brand new electronics technician Ricardo Alvarado.
Retiring CMPD staffers Lieutenant Tim Schennum and Captain Allen Huggins were honored for their nearly 3 decades of service each. Both men are looking forward to their retirement.
New police officers Curtis Hazell, Arnold Alegado , Ryan Novikoff and Jonathon Tripp were also part of this ceremony.
New Community Service Specialists Amanda Seers, Jessica Jung and Alec Tanchauco also received their badges.
The ceremony was a true family affair, with wives, children, parents, siblings and significant others filling the auditorium to see their loved-ones swear to protect and defend us. The cornerstone of each ceremony was the pinning of the badge on the chest of each individual. We saw wives pinning husbands, fathers pinning sons, mothers pinning daughters, brother pinning brother, son pinning father, boyfriend pinning girlfriend and Chief Gazsi pinning one individual, too. I had to chuckle because, after new Sergeant Doug Johnson was pinned by his wife, Monique Beckner - also a member of the CMPD - she gave him a smooch, then walked back to her seat with just the slightest hint of a blush on her cheeks. I told her later that I can't remember the last time I saw a cop blush. I also asked her if she was now required to salute her husband since he outranked her. The answer was, "He's a sergeant at work, but I'm the commander at home." Perfect!
At the end of the ceremony a very moving slide show about recently-deceased Detective Mike Delgadillo was shown to the audience. Chief Gazsi spoke passionately about Mike's 32 years of service and the huge hole his death leaves in the organization. There were only a few dry eyes in the auditorium following that remembrance. Services for Mike Delgadillo will be held tomorrow, Friday, March 15th at 11:00 at the Saint Thomas More Catholic Parish, 51 Marketplace, Irvine.
GIVE IT A REST, JIM!
With the exception of Mayor Jim Righeimer telling the crowd that he was a member of a law enforcement family and that "this council supports the police 100%", it was a very good morning. The mayor should be reminded that actions speak louder than words, and that talk is cheap but excellence in law enforcement is not.
WE'RE IN GOOD HANDS
Thanks to all those brave young people who step up and protect and serve us every day. I left the proceedings feeling a great sense of pride in the CMPD, and knowing that we are in good hands.