Collins retires after 24 years at TPD

Published 7:12 pm Monday, May 4, 2009

Troy Police Officer Willie Collins Jr. wouldn’t say goodbye Monday at his retirement ceremony, but he did say “so long.”

After 24 years at the police department, public housing officer Collins has put away his badge to enjoy a new career path.

“I’m going to rest a little while, and then I’ll pursue another job,” Collins said. “It’s been a great experience, from the chief, to the lieutenants, sergeants and the patrol division. We’ve had a great working relationship and have all worked together to get the job done.”

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Collins, who joined the department in June 1985, has worked as a patrol officer, animal control officer, sergeant and most recently as the public housing officer, where Collins said he found his niche.

“Troy Housing Authority has been very good to me,” Collins said. “I found my home there. It’s something I really loved.”

And, it’s also somewhere Police Chief Anthony Everage said Collins’ work did not go unnoticed.

“Public housing is not an easy place to work, but he made public housing a safer place to live,” Everage said.

Collins said the stress of the job and high blood pressure have led to his decision to retire, but born and raised in Troy, he said he isn’t going anywhere far.

He will continue to coach football at Charles Henderson High School, as he has done for more than 20 years.

Collins’ service to the Troy Police Department wasn’t just noticed by his co-workers.

Several Troy City Councilmen stood up to give a salute of their own to Collins.

“Willie Collins is someone young guys need to look up to,” said Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford. “One thing I do is scan the police reports every day, and I assure you, there are about two areas where there’s going to be one heck of a party because Collins won’t be there tonight.”

Councilman Jason Reeves echoed Lunsford’s words.

“You’re an important part of this community today, and you will continue to be,” Reeves said.