AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - The Amarillo Police Department is losing one of its own after a lengthy run on the force.
You've seen his face on our newscasts over the years, 34 to be exact, but Cpl. Jerry Neufeld is now giving up his uniform to retirement.
Neufeld joined the Amarillo Police Department in 1982 when he was 19-years-old. The joining age has since changed to 21, but he says he does not regret joining that young one bit.
But now, he says, is the time to hang up his badge.
"My wife is retiring at the same time and our plans are to travel while we're young enough and we don't have any grand kids to want to hang out with and do stuff with them. Our kids are down in the metroplex area. We don't have any family here, so we're just going to go travel for a few years. We may travel for 6 months, we may travel for 6 years," says Neufeld.
In his tenure, Neufeld says he has seen a lot change.
"The technology has just...a huge tremendous change in what we've seen since the cars when I first got into them compared to where we're at now. I mean, it's literally night and day difference," says Neufeld. "Obviously we didn't have cell phones back then, we didn't have computers back them that we were obviously be using in a car, you know. Digital cameras, and the in-car cameras, the recording devices the officers wear, that kind of stuff. That wasn't even though of or heard of back in those days."
Neufeld's successor has been named. Officer Jeb Hilton has been with the department since 2004 and will take on the task of leading the crime prevention unit.
"Definitely stepping in after somebody like Corporal Neufeld is going to be hard to fill. He's been here a long time, he's got a lot of experience dealing with things that I haven't seen or I haven't come across, so I have to definitely do a lot of hard work and educate myself on a lot of the things that he knows that just come natural to him," says Hilton.