Sheffield Police Department a 'patriotic employer' - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Sheffield Police Department a 'patriotic employer'

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Two banners hang in the entryway at the Sheffield Police Department, symbolizing their support for two of their men currently on deployments. Two banners hang in the entryway at the Sheffield Police Department, symbolizing their support for two of their men currently on deployments.
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SHEFFIELD, AL (WAFF) -

One police department is getting national recognition for its support of the troops.

The Sheffield Police Department has been named a "patriotic employer" three times in the last four years.

It is an award Chief Greg Ray describes as bittersweet.

"It is a double edged sword because we are taking some of our best officers and sending them to the conflicts all throughout, and we also have a home front to protect, so it's kind of a catch-22 situation, but we realize this has to happen," he said.

Two banners hang in the entryway at the Sheffield Police Department, symbolizing their support for two of their men currently on deployments.

Covering their positions on the home front isn't always easy.

"Sometimes it's a burden when you don't have enough officers to cover shifts and being gone for a year at a time, it's tough," said Ray. "We always hate to see that officer leave, but we do realize what they're doing."

The Department of Defense has recognized the Sheffield Police Department as a patriotic employer. The award honors the sacrifices made by employers who support our nation's guard and reserve service members.

"We certainly stand behind every officer that's ever been. We're honored to have officers from our department protect our country," said Ray.

He said he admires his officers for their commitment to protecting our country.

"It's hard to imagine being a two front soldier, being an officer, and then going off in the military and fighting for your country, and then coming back and being a law enforcement officer. I admire people like that," he said.

One of the two soldiers, Rodney Rippey, just returned home from his deployment on Monday with the 167th unit in Cullman.

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