Making a Difference: Nanty Glo police captain goes above and beyond call of duty
NANTY GLO -- She does more not because she has to, but because she wants to.
Nanty Glo police Capt. Vicki Walker is determined to be familiar with the latest training, to help the men and women who wear police badges.
It may be small, but Walker’s office is more than just a place where she does her paperwork. It's where she shows her devotion and determination.
"When I turn and look at this wall of inspiration, I remember where I’ve been what I’ve learned and I remember why I do it," Walker said.
The wall is covered in numerous certificates that Walker has received over the course of her eight-year career as a police officer. Many of the classes were not required, and she had to pay for some of them.
Walker didn't enter law enforcement until she was 35. By then, she already had a family. With three daughters and a husband, Walker was aware of the challenges she would face.
"It's a male-dominated field, and having women come in, you have to prove yourself twice as hard," Walker said.
"She gets up every day, she puts on that badge, that jacket, and that vest and that badge and her gun and she looks forward to the day," said Kandi Boring, a family friend.
Boring has known Walker for about six years and said she has looked up to her.
"She'll get one thing accomplished, and then she just works so hard for another," Boring said.
Working hard is something with which Walker, like most in law enforcement, is familiar. Besides being the police captain at Nanty Glo, she's also a corporal at East Conemaugh Borough.
“We help each other out. We all work different shifts,” Walker said.
She said she never regrets protecting and serving others, but in 2015, when good friend and co-worker Lloyd Reed was killed on duty, Walker changed.
“There's times I will sit here and just smile. There's times I sit here and a tear or two will fall,” Walker said.
Reed's death opened up something else in Walker: a need that she said Cambria County doesn't have. She went back to school to study forensic psychology.
"While I’m working and when I retire from this job, my goal is to focus on law enforcement tragedies and focus on those who need therapy," Walker said.