21 years ago I became a police officer and it is a decision I have never regretted. Becoming a police officer at age 20 made me grow up fast and realize the impact a police officer can have on families and a community. I will never forget a call to a home where a 17 year old son was out of control. When I arrived the son was in his room and his parent’s had flush faces and the dad was visibly shaking. They were obviously very upset and at their wits end; they looked to me for advice. I remember thinking to myself, “I’m 20 years old, what do I know about raising a troubled 17 year old?” I realized it is much easier to look at situations an unattached, third party perspective. I provided legal and practical guidance to the parents and spoke at length with the son. To my surprise they embraced much of what I told them. They were so appreciative they sent a letter to my police chief at the time. I saw them about six months later at a local restaurant and they made a point of thanking me again. It was situations like this that I fulfilled a desire I had; that is to help and make things better. For me, helping and making things better would become my mission in serving our community. I had learned police officers count; they can have an impact and can make a difference.