By Joyce Hubler
Detective (ret.), #2949
This year’s Foundation of Retired Police Officers/Dispatchers reunion weekend began on Friday, March 15, with a wonderful tour of our Phoenix Regional Police Academy. Organized by Advanced Training Bureau Sergeant Johnathon Dennison, this was a real hit with the attendees. Families with children and grandchildren took part in demonstrations in the tactical village, shooting scenarios and the Taser. We all received just a glimpse of the thorough training received by our Phoenix Police recruits. For many of us, just walking the Academy grounds brought back memories of how it was “back when” and admiration for our active officers and our Department, which supplies the very best in training.
Later that evening, choir practice was held at Helio Basin Brewing, 3935 E. Thomas Rd. About 70 folks met to enjoy great drinks, food and company. This is a tradition that started last year for our reunion weekend, and it was so well received we knew we needed to do it again.
Our Foundation/Museum picnic was held on a beautiful Phoenix spring day. Once again, great musical entertainment was provided by Bill Lewis’ Borderland Band. Their music is fantastic and so are they! They donate their services and their talent to make our picnic something really special. You guys rock!
Thank you to the Special Assignments Unit (SAU) for bringing your equipment displays, weapons and presentations to the crowds. That really wowed a lot of folks.
We had 311 signed-in attendees and there were uniformed Phoenix Police officers who did not sign in, so our total attendance was approximately 340.
Our officer attendees ranged from highest serial number #10614 — belonging to Gage Quintana, Karla Clark’s grandson, who just graduated from our Academy on March 21 — to our own legend Ken Renter, #387.
This year, our Foundation picnic honored 26 retired dispatchers. The Phoenix Police Museum provided beautiful custom-etched glasses to award the folks who used to tell us where to go, but also who always had our backs. Thank you to all our retired and current dispatchers. You are important!
I would like to extend a special thank-you to all who support the reunion picnic, and to those who show up very early to set up and stay very late to tear down. You are very special people and it could not happen without your help and support. I love all of you. See ya next year!