NOLANVILLE — Mark Stafford, 43, is the third reserve officer pinned into the Nolanville Police Department ranks this year. On March 6, Stafford’s family looked on proudly while he was sworn in to office during a City Council meeting.
The badge-pinning ceremony is as much a right of passage in Nolanville’s police force as it is a family affair. Stafford was pinned by his 17-year-old daughter, Megan.
“I’ve been with Nolanville since around June of last year,” Stafford said. “They just never got around to pinning the badge on me like that.”
The department now has seven reserve officers and six full-time officers.
A resident of Harker Heights for several years, Stafford has a diverse job history. He has held a mortuary license since 1996 and previously served in several police units.
“I used to be a police officer in Lott and also in Ranger and a reserve officer in Morgan’s Point Resort, near Belton,” he said.
Currently, Stafford works as a U.S. postal carrier in Harker Heights, but he says he hopes soon to get a full-time job as a policeman.
“He brings a wealth of experience in caring and wanting to protect the community in which he serves,” said Police Chief Gary Kent during the ceremony. “His day job carries the initials of P.M., postman, and now his new job carried the initials P.M., for policeman. So, there’s something about P.M. that he must like, like the P.M. shift.”
Kent said he was happy in the number of quality applicants the force has been able to attract. More police reserves will be added to the force when they get another applicant who seems like the right fit, he said.
“It’s the greatest job in the world, and I wouldn’t give it up for anything,” Stafford said.