It was 10 years ago Sept. 11, 2001 when the great tragedy hit our country with terrorist running airplanes into the twin towers in New York City. It was a moment I’ll never forget, and we must never forget the fragilities of freedom, and the many lives that were ended and taken in that moment of tyranny. Sometimes it’s all too easy to forget and many of us don’t wish to remember tragedy, when America was under attack, but we must remember even the beautiful heroes proved in liberating strife, and the many acts of compassion and unity that followed that tragic day.
In this issue, we wanted to focus on our local heroes, and those who serve our community, giving countless hours of time, and sacrifice away from family and sleep sometimes, to protect the freedoms we enjoy in Morgan County.
Our first interview took us to the city offices where we met with our local Sheriff Blaine Breshears and the deputies. When asked what a typical day is like for an officer, the response was , “There’s really no typical day in the life of an officer. A routine traffic stop has often lead to a drug bust, and every day changes.” An officer is always on duty, because the staff is short handed at times, even on an officer’s day off, they could be called on to assist. When the question was asked why they do what they do, Deputy Rohbock stated, “I love it. It’s what I’ve always wanted to do, ever since I was a young boy.” Deputy Taylor said that “every day is different, it’s never boring.”
Some of the challenges they face in this small community, are having to make an arrest or issue a D.U.I. or a ticket one moment, and seeing the person again in the grocery store. It can be awkward at times because of the closeness of the community. The officers are doing their job, however, honoring the office they hold, and standing to the laws of the land. The other big challenge they face is funding. The department is short staffed by 5 officers per capita based on the large geographic area they patrol. This puts a greater toll and responsibility on each officer and their families, as they rise to the call, at whatever hour to keep the peace and assist their fellow officers. When asked how the way they do things changed since 9/11 Officer Scott Peay stated, “ They are much more trained and more diligent in checking infrastructures on a regular basis, such as dams, bridges and power stations, and more in-depth on routine stops.”
When officers were asked what we can do better as a community, it was stated that we need to start reporting right WHEN an incident happens, or when there is a suspicious person. Many county residents like to give the benefit of a doubt when they see someone or something not quite right. “Morgan needs to realize this isn’t a Mayberry Town. Stop leaving your keys in the car, or your garages or cars unlocked,” stated chief deputy Kevin Edwards. The times we live in are different, and we need to be smart as a community and take the necessary precautions in our everyday living. We need to feel comfortable reporting anything suspicious.