The reports on TV in the wake of the Great Flood of 2016 have given some viewers the impression that many chose to leave Livingston Parish rather than endure a grueling recovery process.

Certainly, some have chosen to seek a post-flood life elsewhere. To the contrary, many residents chose to remain in Livingston Parish.

In the City of Walker, a group of residents have taken it one step further.

The City Council at its April 10 meeting approved the hiring of five reserve officers and a part-time officer.

Robert Ardoin, a resident of Livingston with 28 years of experience in law enforcement, was approved as a part-time officer.

The five reserve officers approved were: Seth Dillon, Harris Reams Jr., Jonathan Sicard, Jonathan Spiers and Wayne “Ryan” Martin.

The prospective officers, who included some Walker High graduates and lifelong city residents, gave strong endorsements for living in the city when they addressed the council.

Reams is a Livingston Parish School System bus driver who serves as a chaplain for the Police Department. He also pastors two churches.

“Walker has been good to me,” said Reams, a 1971 WHS graduate who has lived his entire life on the same street in the city.

“I’ve been looking forward to coming home for seven years,” said Spiers, a 2009 WHS graduate who served in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Sicard said, “After moving here, I would never move back to Baton Rouge.”

It takes a special person to wear a badge. Even as a reserve officer, the job comes with a built-in possibility of extreme danger.

They also accept a big responsibility with the job and must adhere to the high standards we expect of full-time officers.

The City of Walker has on its police force six new additions who not only want to serve and protect, but also strive to make it a better place for the next generation of residents.

They love their parish and they’re vested in it. They also recognize the responsibility of their job.

We thank them for their service, particularly in the challenging times which may loom ahead.

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