A new road
After serving 20 years, East Syracuse Police Officer Michael Regan is retiring from the police force.
He was re-hired part-time before he finished his last day full-time on Feb. 26.
"It's hard to just walk away from it," he said about his longtime vocation.
However, in a few short months, he'll be starting over altogether when he and his wife head south -- a move that Regan said he is ready.
Regan began his career in law enforcement at age 25. He first joined the Manlius Police Department under Police Chief Leo Capria, who Regan said played an instrumental role in his decision to join the academy. After working almost two years in Manlius, Regan was hired to serve the people of East Syracuse. He started out by working overnight road patrol, was promoted to sergeant and for three years worked in investigations.
When asked what is the most gratifying part of being in law enforcement, Regan answered that it's surviving.
"It's making it to the 20 years and not pushing up daisies," he said. "That's pretty rewarding."
He described life as a police officer as challenging; the risk factor always present. His mentor through the years, Chief William Peverly who now works for the Onondaga County Sheriff's Department, not only provided him with guidance, but also everybody with whom he worked.
"That's the way he was," Regan reflected.
And now, after 20 years under his belt, Regan offered some advice of his own.
"Don't let [the job] get to you [because] trust me, it does," he said, addressing current and future police officers. "You've gotta have an out, a release (i.e. commute time, camping, spending time with family) -- something away from [the daily stress] -- because it will beat you up if you don't."