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JUNE 2021 Blues Vol 37 No. 6

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JUNE 2021 Blues Vol 37 No. 6 • The History of the Galveston Island Beach Patrol • Beach Safety Tips • It's Island Time - Where to Stay, Eat & Play on the Island • The Texas School District Police Chiefs Conference • State & National Law Enforcement News • Warstory - What Happened to Susan Miller? • President Biden Receives Light Bulb Award • Open Road - The End of the HEMI? • Fishing with Rusty Barron • Dr. Tina speaks with David Edwards - Humanizing the Badge

A Trip Back in Time Two

A Trip Back in Time Two things happened in 1983 that continue to be significant in Texas law enforcement today. One, it was the year that planning began to create what would later become The BLUES, a newsletter of sorts for the Harris County Sheriff’s Department. And two, some forty-five miles south on Galveston Island, the Galveston Island Beach Patrol began a new journey of its own under the leadership of man named Vic Maceo. The Beach Patrol actually began in 1875 when a lifesaving station was established at San Luis Pass. Over the years, the beach patrol bounced back and forth between municipal departments with no real commitment for funding or ownership. Finally, in 1983 Vic Maceo was appointed as the Director of the Galveston Island Beach Patrol under the direction of Sheriff Joe Max Taylor and the Galveston County Sheriff’s Department. Over the course of the next 38 years since, only two people really have guided the Beach Patrol ship —Maceo and Peter Davis. Vic was the Captain (he was a Major at Galveston County, but this is a ships story and there are only Captains… lol) of the ship from 1983 to 2007 and Peter Davis was his first mate and second in command. In 2007, Maceo retired, and Davis took the helm and has been there ever since. In the years they were together, the two of them ran a tight ship and guided it through some turbulent waters – both literally and figuratively. There were hurricanes, floods, beach erosions, budget increases, budget cuts, good years, bad years, and the never-ending change of lifeguards. Every year new recruits would be chosen and trained to be the best of the best. Some remained from previous years and some moved on. It was an ever-changing cast of characters. What remained the same was those two guys at the helm. Together they created one of the finest Beach Patrol units in the United States. I visited Peter a couple weeks ago and it was truly a trip back in time. It’s been 14 years since I walked those stairs to the Patrol Office on the top floor of the Stewart Beach Pavilion. Other than the fact the office is now located in what used to be the Beach Club, everything looks pretty much the same. The walls still have pictures of lifeguards from years gone by including Leroy Colombo, the greatest lifeguard of all time. In a way you can say nothing has changed and everything has changed. The people are all new, MICHAEL BARRON the offices are in a new place, the uniforms and the trucks are all painted a new color and for the first time, the Beach Patrol is its own police department. What hasn’t changed is the number one goal of everyone that works there – get through an entire season and not have to recover a single body. Everyone that’s ever worked there knows that rarely happens and someone always drowns during the year. But that doesn’t stop all 100+ members of the department from working night and day to save each and every person that gets in trouble on Galveston’s 32 miles of beaches. It’s an exhausting job, but men and women of the Galveston Beach Patrol wouldn’t have it any other way. For me personally, I’m extremely proud of the time I spent with Galveston County and the Galveston County Beach Patrol and it was honor and a privilege to serve under Vic Maceo and Peter Davis. These guys are truly the best of the best. But now the question remains, who is going to step up and take the helm when Peter Davis retires? Ready To Serve You For information contact: Jim Rodriguez • Law Enforcement Sales Professional • 915-422-6446 FT. WORTH 6201 NE Loop 820 HOUSTON 10310 Wortham Center Dr. Shoot Point Blank Law Enforcement is a division of Shoot Point Blank and is committed to providing exclusive law enforcement products & services to our agency partners & individual officers. • Special indoor range pricing for agency training & qualifications • Group range memberships for agencies • Expansive offerings of firearms, ammunition, duty gear, & accessoreies from top manufacturers • Offer individual officer purchase programs from several manufacturers ARLINGTON 5661 S. Cooper St. HOUSTON 9245 FM 1960 Bypass Rd. DALLAS 1915 S. Stemmons Fwy HOUSTON 350 E Nasa Pkwy AUSTIN 1775 Warner Ranch Dr. SAN ANTONIO 722 SW Loop 410 4 The BLUES POLICE MAGAZINE The BLUES POLICE MAGAZINE 5 Sun - Thurs: 10am – 7pm • Fri & Sat: 10am - 8pm |

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