Officers paid for their own badges to offset costs

As the city of West Linn prepared to kick off its centennial birthday in 2013, the officers of the West Linn Police Department decided they wanted to do something to commemorate it as well. A team of officers led by Officer Blain McKean began a process to design a badge to mark this historic occasion.

"This is a once-in-a-career opportunity to have a 100-year commemorative badge" McKean.

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO: WEST LINN POLICE DEPARTMENT - The new centennial police badge features the American flag and an eagle.

After talking with officers, he knew they wanted to do something that was unique and unlike many of the centennial badges other agencies in surrounding jurisdictions have developed over the past few years. "We wanted a design that set us apart, celebrated the city and presented a patriotic spirit," McKean said.

After preparing the design and gaining the support of the officers it was presented to Chief Terry Timeus who threw his support behind it. The only issue was department budgets made replacing the current badges for one year both impractical and fiscally irresponsible. The officers requested, and were allowed, to purchase the badges on their own so as to not burden the city economically.

"The badge is the most visible and recognizable symbol of a police department. This badge is not only symbolic of the changes ahead with our new police department building, but also a symbol of our team's ongoing commitment to our community," Timeus said.

The new badges include a cascading American flag and an eagle with spread wings. Each badge marks the centennial and has the officer's Department of Public Safety Standards and training number on it. According to police, comments from those who have noticed them on officers’ uniforms have been complimentary. Officers are authorized to wear the badge until August 2014, when they will be retired and replaced with the original badges.

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