High School, Second Place Winner – Jordan Brown.  Essay submitted by high school teacher, Nicole Thren, Grossmont High School.

An Honest Officer

Every little girl believes that her dad is her hero. I guess that makes me no different, but I
guarantee that my dad is like no one you’ve never met. A San Diego police officer for 23 years,
my dad is the definition of a hero: brave, courageous, and willing to put the lives of others before
his own. His valiant acts are not left on the streets every night when he comes home, but off-duty
he makes a major difference in not only the community, but my life and the life of my family.

At the age of 24, my dad found his true calling. After six grueling months in the
academy, he graduated and received the honor of serving San Diego as a new and able police
officer. He was given the difficult task of cleaning up and protecting downtown and as expected,
he did not fail. Day and night he spent patrolling the streets stopping burglaries, busting drug
dealers, and seeing horrid scenes ,all so the residents of San Diego felt safe and were kept out of
harm’s way. Never violent, never biased, and never faltering, he is a person everyone should feel
safe knowing he is protecting your home. In 2004 he arrived to the scene of a call to find an
elderly woman purple from lack of oxygen. Without a second thought, he dropped to the
woman’s side performing CPR and ultimately saved her life. This heroic act earned my dad the
lifesaver award months later. Acts like these proved my dad was deserving of a position as a
detective. Not just any detective, he was placed into one of the most dangerous positions in the
San Diego police department- the gang unit. Just like everyone knew he would, he excelled
during his several years as a detective. His upward trend continued and was once again offered
an honorary position where he was cross sworn into the FBI as a part of the joint terrorism task
force. The taskforce was focused on stopping acts of terrorism before they occured on American
soil. This new position made him in charge of national safety along with San Diego’s security.
As if all this was not enough, just this year my dad passed all the tests, blew away all the
interviews, and was named Sergeant. As of now, he is working crazy hours to keep our city and
all within it safe. It is scary to watch a person you love leave everyday, and not knowing if they
will make it home safe, but that is the price my family and I pay to have to a hero as a dad.

He takes off his badge and hangs up his uniform everyday before returning home to our
family, but his amazing character and eagerness to protect and serve follow him home. Being a
hero does not always mean fighting crime or putting yourself in harm’s way, but to me it means
being accountable to the ones you love and making a difference in people’s lives. Since I can
remember, my dad has always been there for my brother and I. At all of our sporting events,
award ceremonies, holidays, and field trips my dad has been front row and making it all the more
fun. The fact that he can work such a stressful job and still find the time and energy to teach me
to ride a bike, to swim, and to play softball makes him someone I will always look up to and
count on. Outside of work, my dad has still found time to coach my brother in baseball for 10
years. He not only coached, but he coached with timeless patience, an understanding heart, and
the intention of making kids fall in love with baseball. Coaching baseball has given him the
opportunity to shape the lives of and leave positive imprints on hundreds of kids in our
community. The footprints he has left on my life, let alone the hundreds of others, is something
only heroes are capable of.

An honest police officer of 23 years and a phenomenal father for 17, my dad is the
perfect example of an everyday hero. Always there for his family and our city, he is someone
everyone should aspire to be.

Bio: 2018 Essay Contest Winner High School – SECOND PLACE: An Honest Officer by Jordan Brown and submitted by teacher Nicole Thren, Grossmont High School, El Cajon, CA.

My Hero by Jocelyne Najar Velazquez

High School, First Place Winner - Jocelyne Najar Velazquez.  Essay submitted by high school teacher, Alaura Dorociak, Charter School of San Diego.Jocelyne is pictured above with essay contest founder, Maj Glenn Ferguson (USMC-retired), and her teacher, Alaura Dorociak.My HeroFirst-place winner...

The Least Honored Heroes in Life by Vanessa Zhou

High School, Third Place Winner - Vanessa Zhou. Essay submitted by high school teacher, Ferdinand Toledo, Scripps Ranch High School.Vanessa is pictured above with her teacher, Ferdinand Toledo.The Least Honored Heroes of LifeThe definition of “hero”, by Oxford Dictionary, states, “a person who is...

My Hero by Luke Renda

Middle School, Third Place Winner - Luke Renda.  Essay submitted by 6th Grade Teacher, Elaine Dolnack, R. Roger Rowe Middle School.Pictured above:  Essay contest founder Major Glenn Ferguson (USMC-retired), Luke Renda, and teacher, Elaine Dolnack.My HeroMy hero’s name is Harley John Bridger but I...

My Amazing Hero by Brandon Torres

Middle School, Second Place Winner - Brandon Torres.  Essay submitted by 8th Grade Teacher, Gabriela Sosa, Heber School.Pictured above: Teacher Gabriela Sosa and Brandon TorresMy Amazing HeroOthers may say that their hero is a Policeman, Firefighter, Doctor, etc, yet unlike the others my hero is...

A Hero in Disguise by Erica Persano

Middle School, First Place Winner - Erica Persano. Essay submitted by teacher, Laura Whitney, Woodland Park Middle School.Pictured above: Teacher Laura Whitney, Erica Persano, Principal Josh Way and Col John PersanoA Hero in DisguiseWhen you picture someone dressed in a fancy costume with a cape,...