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Despite Challenges—Time To Be Thankful

As we do our best to celebrate the holidays—as safely as we can—it’s a good time to look back and see where we’ve come, despite 2020 being one of the most challenging years in our history, and renew our hope for the new year in our country and here in Volusia County.

Looking back over these months, I’m reminded of how grateful I am for the men and women in the Volusia Sheriff’s Office who are committed to protecting the safety of all, no matter the cost. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

Yes, we have endured crisis upon crisis this year. But thankfully, we are seeing the arrival of vaccines that hopefully will help us stem the global pandemic in 2021 and help our world begin much-needed recovery.

Even as the storms continue, you might want to stop and think about what you’re most grateful for. Go a step further: Tell the people who matter most to you.

Here are a few things I am grateful for, in no particular order:

  • Continued safety and health of all the sworn officers and civilians in our agency, and the peaceful resolution of so many potentially dangerous calls.
  • U.S. veterans who sacrificed so much for us, throughout our nation’s history. For the many who paid the ultimate price. They deserve to be honored and appreciated all year long.
  • Law enforcement officers throughout our nation who are committed to protecting their communities. For those we mourn as they gave their lives for our safety— at least 280 this year, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page www. which tracks line of duty deaths. Of those, 164 have died from COVID-19. Seventeen were K9s. May God bless their loved ones who are left behind.
  • My parents; my daughters, and my grandchildren.

These are not easy days to be in law enforcement. We have the best law enforcement officers and staff in the country right here in Volusia County, and they deserve every bit of support and gratitude we can give them. Volusia County’s crime rate dropped again in 2020, proof that their hard work is paying off. We have to keep striving, but I couldn’t be more proud of the incredible work our people have done to make huge improvements in fighting crime in our community.

I want each of you to know how proud you should be of the deputies and police you have patrolling your streets and protecting your neighborhoods.

May God bless each of you, your friends and families, and our great nation.

Best wishes for a healthy,
happy 2021,
Sheriff Mike Chitwood