Changing of the guard – and a softer side of MPD

Last year ended and 2019 began with a changing of the guard at Monroe Police Department. Public Safety Director Keith Glass said his official goodbye on Dec. 31, 2019, and on Jan. 2, 2019, Chief R.V. Watts was sworn in as the new police chief. Fire Chief Bill Owens took up his position on Jan 1, 2019, but did not need to be sworn in. As public safety director, Glass was head of both the police and fire departments.

Both Watts at his swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 2, 2019, and Glass at his retirement party on Dec. 17, 2018, showed their softer side, getting emotional as they spoke of their careers and the people who supported them over the years. Watts paid tribute to his wife who he said had supported him when he got out of the service and began his career in law enforcement at the Greene County Sheriff’s office when he “didn’t have a dime.” Watch his swearing-in and emotional speech in his own words on Youtube below.

At his retirement celebration on Dec. 17, fire and police officers who had served under Glass, fellow law enforcement personnel from federal and state agencies and members of the public paid tribute to the retiring public safety director. When Glass himself spoke, he went over his years of service with the Monroe Police Department, choking up some of the time. His official police weapon was retired and given to him as well as many presentations from the police department and the fire department. Watch highlights of the celebration, including Glass speech on the Youtube video below.

In a week that we paid tribute to those who serve and protect, it seemed fitting to remember those in our community who take an oath to serve and protect us and to see just how much these law enforcement officers are very much members of our own community.

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