Fishing, motorcycle riding are in the future for LO Police Captain Don Forman

Captain Don Forman: You will be missed.

After 31 years with the Lake Oswego Police Department and four years before that over on the coast in Seaside, Forman is calling it quits this week.

His fellow police officers, citizens of Lake Oswego, the business community and yes, this newspaper will miss him. Forman wears his badge on his sleeve … he is the perfect ambassador for a club that does not have your typical clientele: Police officers.

He is able to defuse many a tense situation using the not-so-traditional police tools of a smile, a well-chosen word and a seeing-the-big-picture mentality.

During the period following former Chief Dan Duncan's death in May of 2010, Forman's strong leadership as interim chief was pivotal in keeping the LOPD a strong, well-oiled machine. He continued in that role until the new police chief, Don Johnson, took charge earlier this summer.

Forman, a thinking-man's officer, is a delight to visit with. A sharp wit, a clever mind, a creative way with words and a ready smile all are important portals into his persona. The fact that he eschews a major farewell party with the city is another key clue into this very public person who, in reality is very private.

And what does Don Forman want to do in his retirement?

While there are undoubtedly other things on his personal bucket list, his current interests involve traveling on his motorcycle and going fishing.

We are going to miss Captain Forman. That's not to say we always agree with him. Usually we do; sometimes we do not.

But we always understand what he has to say and why and we know him to be a man of principle. He lets the chips fall where they may … treat him and his department fairly and he is willing to take any lumps that may be deserved.

We think his kind of police work is a key reason why the city of Lake Oswego has suffered much less of the serious crime that our fellow suburban communities and the city of Portland have had to deal with. He once told us he enjoyed his time as a police detective enormously and it's clear that his detective mind continues to percolate as he ponders various elements of criminal activity within the city and makes plans to deal with it.

Don Forman might have made a great politician, debater or human service worker. Possibly, he would have been a wonderful doctor, pastor or lawyer. We don't know for sure. We do know that he brings a top-notch skill set to his job as a police officer, a set that includes listening, compassion, street smarts, memory and fairness.

Lake Oswego is lucky to have had his eyes, ears and brains protecting and looking after us all these years. And Don Forman is lucky to be leaving at the top of his game and heading off in search of his next great adventure.

That adventure is going to involve choppers and fish. And we hope that it brings happiness and fulfillment to a man who always seems to hold Lake Oswego in his highest regard.

Captain Don Forman: You will be missed.


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