by Carla Noah Stutsman
Described by their superior officer as “always busy working on something, but never too busy to assist in any other area when they are asked to do so,” Azle police officer David VanderKaay and Cpl. Patrick Bovea were surprised to learn they’d been awarded the Optimists International’s Respect For Law Enforcement Award.
Given by the Weatherford/Parker County Optimist Club, the award was presented in a May 9 ceremony.
Azle police Lt. Darrell West nominated the duo – both School Resource Officers – for the award.
“These two officers work side by side on a daily basis, always exhibiting a high moral character and work ethic. Both have been and continue to be involved in numerous aspects of policing including Juvenile law, the First Offender Program, Success With Every Azle Teen (S.W.E.A.T.), Police Explorers Post 203, Alcohol and Tobacco Law enforcement.
“Additionally, they are involved in numerous Azle ISD functions including security for sporting events and the Shattered Dreams Program geared toward the prevention of underage drinking and Driving While Intoxicated.” West wrote in his nomination letter.
“Both these officers handle the day-to-day incidents that occur within our school system and are still able to attend to the various other tasks mentioned above,” West continued. “Cpl. Bovea and Officer VanderKaay are assets to the department and the community in which they serve. I believe that they are both deserving of the recognition of this award.”
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