September 30, 2005
There was some well-deserved recognition today for Charlottesville's finest. At an awards ceremony, one officer moved up the ranks. Charlottesville Police Chief Tim Longo promoted Officer Rodean Shaner to sergeant. Many other officers were honored for their dedication to the force.
Honored were Sgt. Gregg M. Davis and Sgt. David C. Jones for 20 years of service and Lt. Ronald R. Roberts for 30 years of service.
There was one more officer distinguished for serving in the force for a quarter of a century.
The year was 1979. Jimmy Carter was president. Margaret Thatcher was elected Prime Minister of Britian and Gary Pleasants joined the Charlottesville Police force.
"I was just short of my 21st birthday when I was hired as a police officer," said Lt. Gary Pleasants.
He took the oath and was ready f or whatever came his way.
"[I was] shot at one time and cut one time all in the first year. That kind of reminded me a little bit of what it was about, but after that things calmed down a bit," said Pleasants.
In the last 25 years, Pleasants has rose up the ranks to Lieutenant. Today with his wife Lori by his side he was honored for his many years of dedicated service.
"For 25 years of service, and I hope 25 years more, Gary Pleasants congratulations, God Bless, good luck, and come get your Jefferson Cup," exclaimed Chief Longo.
He has earned the respect of his fellow officers.
"We came up through the ranks together and Gary is a huge asset to the department," said Capt. Bryant Bibb.
Twenty-five years of doing anything is a long time but especially for those fighting crime.
"Policing is hard on family, it's hard on the body, hard on the mind, but its also one of the most rewarding experiences anyone could ever have, and so for Gary Pleasants, yeah, while 25 years has been a long time, I don't think he would have changed a minute of it," said Charlottesville Police Chief TIm Longo.
Not even for a second, said Pleasants. His son hopes to follow in his dad's footsteps very soon.