Saturday, November 3, 2012
Class 213 a little over a week ago.
I was reminded of the tough journey of the academy and the accomplishment of graduation. For many from Class 212, we enthusiastically welcome our newly acquired seniority as we hear that Class 213 has begun their Field Training Program. All kidding aside, I wish Class 213 the best of success as they enter this new phase of their training.
Since Graduation, the training was turned up a notch. I was assigned to the Evening Shift right out of the academy. No more classroom scenarios. All theory was now turning into real world application. Trying to learn on evening shift was like trying to drink water from a fire hose. You quickly realize your weaknesses and strengths as you have stepped into a much larger(and meaner) world. You swallow your pride and you stay alive. "Welcome to HPD, Rookie!"
As a Police Officer, you don your uniform and armor every day, strap on your weapons, and patrol your area. Simple tasks like driving and looking for addresses at night in areas that any normal person would avoid eventually became second nature. But never routine. You learn to minimize the dangers of this honored profession very quickly. As a police officer you meet distressed individuals in their time of need and offer assistance as best you can sometimes becoming their only hope. And of course, returning home and taking off your gear at the end of your shift and knowing you get to do it again tomorrow is a priceless feeling.
I spent 17 years in the corporate world and never once felt the satisfaction I feel one hour on duty as a Houston Police Officer. I look forward to at least another 17 years as Houston’s Finest.
As for me and many graduates of Class 212, I have completed the Field Training Program and am now riding with a Mentor Police Officer.
Congratulations and good luck to Class 213.
And to all my Classmates and fellow officers-“Be safe out there.”
Officer A.R. Rivera
at 8:33 AM