For the past few months Gary King, a lifelong Clay County resident, can be seen most days wearing a Writ Deputy uniform for the Clay County Sheriff’s Department, traveling the highways and back roads of the area to serve papers to individuals involved in the judicial process. But for nearly twenty years, Gary has been seen wearing a Clay County Reserve Deputy uniform, directing traffic at ballgames and assisting with the Apple Festival. Although Gary is now an official sheriff’s department employee, he takes the role of Reserve Deputy very seriously. In fact, Gary is so committed to the position that he volunteered to attend an academy to receive standardized training to make himself better suited for the job. A personal goal Gary had set for himself nearly a decade ago, he is now officially a cadet at the Eastern Panhandle Deputy Sheriff Reserve Academy.
Traveling four hours to Jefferson County once a week for a period of eighteen weeks, Gary will become certified in a broad curriculum including classroom, practical and range training. One of twenty-five cadets currently enrolled at the academy, Gary seems to putting his years of experience and knowledge. “Gary is a shining example of why our program works so well” said Deputy Director Joe Malcolm. He continued, “Gary is an awesome student. The fact that he is a currently a process server and has stepped back into the reserve deputy training is phenomenal.”
Once Gary graduates the program, he and the other Reserve Deputies can perform many Sheriff’s Office duties including providing security for various events, providing traffic control, serving court papers, providing prisoner transport to/from County Courts, the Regional Jail and other facilities, in addition to other Community Outreach programs. All Reserve Deputies are volunteers and provide this service at no charge to the county.
In it’s third year of existence, the Eastern Panhandle Deputy Sheriff Reserve Academy is a non-profit organization that strives to provide each Reserve Deputy with formal standardized training through which he/she becomes fully trained and capable of performing Reserve Deputy functions. The academy program also works to create a cohesive working relationship between Reserve Deputies, Deputies and all other Law Enforcement Agencies in the State of West Virginia. For more information about the Academy, visit http://www.jcdsr.org/academy.