ELIZABETHTOWN — Essex County Deputy Sheriff Robert Budwick really appreciated the support he got from Sheriff Richard Cutting while serving as a military police officer at a remote Afghan base.
To show that, Budwick flew a U.S. flag over the Sabalu-Harrison Outpost in Bagram, Afghanistan, then brought it home to present to Cutting.
‘CHANCE TO SERVE’
In a recent ceremony in the Old County Courthouse at Elizabethtown, Budwick had a chance to thank the sheriff.
“In August 2007, I joined the Sheriff’s Department,” the deputy said. “They gave me the chance to serve my community.”
He said he entered the Army National Guard in October 2008 and returned after basic training.
In 2013, he was called to active duty to serve a tour in Afghanistan.
“I went and spoke to the sheriff, to let him know what was going on, and one of the first things he had to say to me was, ‘If there is anything you need, you or your wife, when you are gone, please do not hesitate to ask.’
“The support is just huge, and I really appreciate that.”
Cutting said he was pleased to support Budwick’s National Guard deployment.
“The field of peace and police officers is not necessarily a safe one,” the sheriff said. “You always wonder, because they work with a different class of people, but then we get that one added risk when one of our officers is with the National Guard and he gets his deployment orders.
“Those hit a little closer to home.
“I know, as a boss, I always worry about my people, but sometimes that gives you more of a feeling of a parent than just wondering and hoping for safety.”
SENSE OF SERVICE
Budwick was deployed from April 2013 to February this year.
“He’s out of his camo uniform; he’s back in his deputy sheriff black,” Cutting said.