The parts of me most people don't know are the many paths that lead me to where I am today and shaped me into the person I have become. Like many others across this great country, the economic downturn of 2007-2008 took a large toll on my family and I. I had worked in the construction industry for nearly 20 years to that point and moved up the ladder to the position of PM/CM in large private-development construction.
2008 taught me to never keep too many eggs in one basket, to say the least. I found myself out of work with no real options. My neighbor, and now friend for life, worked as a deputy with the Montrose County Sheriff's Office on the Western Slope of Colorado. He suggested I attend the police academy and start a career as a peace officer.
At first I laughed and told him there was no way I could be a cop! I had been a troubled youth with "Broken Family Syndrome," and that was putting it mildly. But with a little more pushing, I enrolled in the academy.
The next 10 years of my life would go by in a flash. I saw things and did things that most people would never understand. Only those who either served in our military or had walked the thin blue line can know. I will never miss a job as much as I will miss being a public servant.
I retired from the Grand County Sheriff's Office in May 2017 with my head held high. You may ask, How were you able to retire, and I will tell you that I had hit the wall and held fast to the promise I made with myself when I started. I promised myself that if the job ever stopped being fun, it would be time to go.
It wasn't the work that got me down or the daily routine of calls, traffic stops, or fatal incidents that caused me to hang up my badge. It was the change in society's view of the uniform that had the biggest impact. It was the way departments and agencies reacted to society that made doing the job nearly impossible. In short, the office politics got to be too much!
I left the GCSO as Patrol Sergeant and K9 Handler. I was fortunate to appear in the National Geographic show Rocky Mountain Law for a few episodes. Those videos are linked to my YouTube page, and I felt this Blog would be needed to explain how I got to where I am at today.
I returned to the Denver metro area where I grew up after leaving the GCSO and returned to heavy construction. The industry hadn't changed, and I transitioned right back to where I had left off. I now spend my free time planning for the next adventure and wondering if the memories of my LEO career will ever fade.
My goal is to ride each of the Backcountry Discovery Routes or BDR's, one or even two a year, until they are complete, then the Trans America Trail or TAT, and at some point look at circling the globe. Yeah, its all been done before, but not by me and maybe not by you.
I will give my input and opinion on the things I do and learn from, like how to pack the right tools, what gear is a must, what gear is extra weight, how do I plan the logistics of long trips off the grid.
In essence, I will open up my blogs to the feedback you provide and learn from what mistakes we all make. It seems, at least to me, that if others can learn from my mistakes, then why can't I learn from theirs.
"Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure"- Bob Bitchen*
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I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!