Detective Retires After Serving for 24 Years
After serving Helena's community for more than 20 years, Detective Richard Drysdale is retiring.
Drysdale: "To me, it's the best job in the world."
Sergeant Detective Richard Drysdale has spent most of his life serving others.
"To me, it's the good guy after the bad guys, saving people and helping the people out in the community."
Drysdale has served 24 years with Helena's Police Department, and another 23 as a security policeman at the Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls. But in a little more than a month, the detective will turn over his badge for good.
Asst. Chief Steve Hagan: "It's gonna be a huge loss for us, because you can't make up that knowledge."
Through the years, Drysdale has maintained a serious and professional demeanor. But underneath the tough exterior, those who know him best say he's caring, compassionate and sensitive.
Drysdale's Daughter Melissa Jensen says, “He also has a very soft and funny side."
Fellow detectives fondly nicknamed the sergeant "Dad", as he is the oldest officer on the force.
Hagan: “He actually I think enjoys being called Dad but ya, he is Dad and everybody here if they hear you say Dad, they know you're talking about Rich."
Chief Troy McGee: "He is the oldest on the department and now with him leaving, I will be the oldest on the department so I guess I will have to listen to that all the time."
Aside from keeping residents safe, Drysdale also made it a priority in his career to be involved in the community.
"He really gets along well in the community, he's known by quite a few people and I think he's going to miss that."
Drysdale: "Police are nothing different than just a citizen with a uniform on and should be involved in the community in one form or another."
And while being a detective will always be a part of who he is, Drysdale and his family are looking forward to the times ahead
Jensen says, "I'm really excited and I hope he is too as he starts this next phase and says goodbye to what he's done for so long that he can look forward to relaxing a little bit more, spending time with his grandkids and just really enjoying life."
Detective Drysdale's last day will be November 8th.
Story by Jill Jagelski, Beartooth NBC.
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