ST. GEORGE, UTAH (ABC4 UTAH) She wanted to become a police officer to help kids just like herself. And for the past twelve years that is exactly what she's been doing. In this week's Behind the Badge report we catch up with St. George Police Officer Lona Trombley.
When students from Westside Christian School delivered messages of appreciation to the St. George Police - Officer Lona Trombley accepted the notes. "These are great guys - I will take in the back so the officers can see them. And not long after that - they're up on the SGPD Facebook page. "I get to work with a lot of great people and I want others to know that." This is part of her job as the department's Public Information Officer. It's a position she didn't plan on. "I never really thought about the PIO position - honestly." "After I had my last son the chief asked me if I would step in." So after 10 years as a patrol officer and school resource officer - she became the spokesperson of the St. George Police Department. In addition to talking to the media about crimes in St. George - she has been part of getting more officers online with programs like Monday Motor Minute and Project Life Saver. "We've been able to highlight different members of the department. And what they do and get that information out to the public." "I think it helps to get people more comfortable to call us." "Often the unknown scares everybody. I'm going to call the police - then what? What happens? What do we do? So, it just walks them through the process and what to expect so its not so scary."
She's also helps the police department's efforts in all kinds of causes - like the Special Olympics Torch Run, Shop with a Cop and Coins for Kids. "Some of those children are from foster care - some are from bad situations. It's about letting them know there are people out there that care about them.""We really do care. I know some think it is a pat phrase thing that we say, but its real. It's true. That is why most of us do what we do - because we really do care."
And she says it's that caring that made her want to be an officer from a very young age. "I actually had a foster dad who was a police officer and we would watch COPS. And I remember thinking I want to be that guy that person who gets kids like me out of my situation and gets them somewhere safe."
Officer Trombley and her husband - who is also an officer with the St. George Police Department have six children. She says that someday she hopes to work with K9, but wants to wait until her kids are older. She has two sisters with disabilities and she says her efforts to help others - especially with things like the Special Olympics. And there are two things you will always find in her office - a bowl of candy and a collection of Officer Lona drawings - colored by kids in the St. George area.
To see other Behind the Badge stories and to nominate an officer, firefighter, dispatcher or paramedic for a future story go to: http://www.good4utah.com/badge
Officer Trombley and her husband - who is also an officer with the St. George Police Department have six children. She says that someday she hopes to work with K9, but wants to wait until her kids are older.
She has two sisters with disabilities. Trombley says they inspire her efforts to help others - especially with things like the Special Olympics.
And there are two things you will always find in her office - a bowl of candy and a collection of "Officer Lona" drawings - a color book drawing of an officer and colored by kids in the St. George area.
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