Henry County Police Chief Keith Nichols (right) recently presented Lt. Eddie Crawford with a retirement plaque, which included his badge. The police department also retired the Lt. Crawford’s gun.
McDONOUGH — After 30 years of working as a law enforcement officer, Henry County Police Lt. Eddie Crawford has retired.
Crawford was flanked by his family, friends and co-workers as they congratulated him during his retirement ceremony recently held at Henry County Police Department (HCPD) headquarters in McDonough.
Officers and police personnel filled the HCPD training room to shake hands and embrace the police lieutenant.
The police department’s chaplain, Ralph Easterwood of Glen Haven Baptist Church, presented Crawford with a Holman Christian Standard Law Enforcement Bible. It is a regular bible with badge on the cover and includes his service record.
“We thank you, Lord, for his Christian beliefs,” said Easterwood, as he mentioned the retired officer during the invocation.
Crawford began his career with the police department in 1982. In 1985, he joined the Henry County Sheriff’s Office. In 1988, he served as the Chief of Police in Locust Grove. In 1992, he returned to HCPD.
Henry County Police Chief Keith Nichols, announced the police department has retired Crawford’s badge No. 532, and gave the retired lieutenant his gun.
“Lt. Crawford, you wore this badge with dignity,” said Chief Nichols, who said he has known Crawford for 21 years. “Back then, we had a gravel parking lot to get to the office,” said Nichols. “In 1995, I was put over uniform patrol, and he was one of our lieutenants. None of the other lieutenants are here today, but you are.”
The police chief recalled years ago, when he was injured in a motorcycle accident.
“I turned around and Eddie was there,” said Nichols. “He went home, got his pick-up truck, loaded up the bike and took me and my wife home. I appreciate you being there for me. Eddie, I am going to miss you, this is a day we all look forward to.”
“I am really going to miss everybody here,” said Crawford. “This is my extended family — we’ve been through tough times and good times together, and everything in between.”
Henry County Board of Commissioners (BOC) Elizabeth “B.J.” Mathis, District I Commissioner Warren Holder, and Henry County Manager Fred Auletta were also on hand for the ceremony. Mathis presented Crawford with a retirement proclamation from the BOC.
“I would like to extend my congratulations to you,” said Mathis. “Law enforcement is not for the weak-hearted or the thin-skinned. You have earned the respect of your guys and that says a lot.”
“Policemen normally don’t try to make friends, but you have to know how to treat people before you can gain their respect,” said Holder. “I hope other officers can learn from Eddie, because at the end of the day that is what it is all about, a respectable career.”
Henry Police Sgt. Woody Fowler presented Crawford with a plaque for 30 years of service to the police department.
HCPD officers lined the wall of the police training room and one by one shook hands as they congratulated Crawford.
Nichols presented Crawford’s wife of 40 years, Susan, with a Police Officer Spousal Award.
“The burning candle symbolizes the lonely nights on the homefront,” said Nichols as he described each entity of the award.