Thirty graduates, including three from Carson City, were certified and honored in Wednesday ceremonies held by the Nevada Commission on Peace Officers’ Standards and Training (POST).
There also were two graduates each from both Douglas and Lyon counties in the group who has concluded 14 weeks of training in-residence at the POST on the former Stewart Indian School grounds. The morning ceremonies featured remarks by Lt. Gov. Mark Hutchison, the keynote speaker. Hutchison quoted Winston Churchill on courage, cited 9/11 bravery and said peace officer work amounts to an influential role.
“You have influence on other people, so use it well,” he said, adding graduates should do well by doing good, setting examples and following in a proud tradition. “It’s in the great tradition of public service.”
Hutchison said Churchill, Great Britain’s prime minister during World War II, called courage the most important virtue because it makes all other virtues possible. Then Hutchison recounted valor of first responders who entered the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, 2001, to save others at great and sometimes fatal peril. He said what’s amazing about peace officers in such circumstances is they don’t think their heroics are amazing.
Michael D. Huynh and Daniel S. Judd of the Carson City Sheriff’s Office were among the graduates, as was Ryan J. Felix of the Carson City Juvenile Justice Center. So, too, were Caitlin Y. Heimark and Francisco A. Torres of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, along with Karl A. Grimmer and Kyle S. Jones of the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office.
Huynh and Judd received their graduation papers directly from Sheriff Ken Furlong, who was among the many sheriffs and other leaders of peace officer organizations on hand to deliver them in person to the new graduates. Huynh said it’s another key step in living out his long-held ambition to serve in law enforcement.
“It’s something I’ve always been interested in since I was a kid,” he said, praising the training he received as covering “everything a basic law enforcement officer needs here in Nevada.”
Huynh, 27, is a Carson High School graduate who has been attending the University of Nevada, Reno (UNR) to take business administration and mechanical engineering courses. He hopes to graduate in a couple of years,
Judd, 25, is a graduate of Douglas High School and UNR, earning the latter diploma in 2013. He said his university major was criminal justice/pre-law. He said in part he entered law enforcement because he had family in it. Both Huynh and Judd, who have been with the sheriff’s office here a year or two. called the training they received in the POST period at Stewart valuable.
Torres and Heimark, the pair from Douglas County, made similar comments. Torres, 28 and a UNR graduate in criminal justice, said he has been with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office two years. He called the 14 weeks of training awesome. He’s a former UNR boxer who was both a regional champion and All-American, Torres’ wife is Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputy Samantha Torres, a five-year peace officer veteran.
Caitlin Heimark, 26, is a Douglas High School and UNR graduate. She studied criminal justice and substance abuse at UNR.
Heimark called the POST training excellent, particularly the “hands-on” work in defensive tactics, emergency vehicle operations and handling of traffic stops. “Hopefully, I will be on patrol soon,” she said.
The ceremony, replete with appropriate peace office panoply that included bagpipes at the start and finish, was held for the POST Academy Class 49/50 in front of POST Building 6 at the Stewart facility in Carson City.