Mequon – The year was 1984, but Mequon Police Captain of Administration Scott Tyler said he remembers it like it was yesterday.
“I was on my very first call on my very first day and there was a noise complaint at the Apple Orchard Apartments,” Tyler recalled. “Well, it ended up being four ladies who were having a bachelorette party and happened to be skinny dipping in the pool. I joke that God was letting me know that day I made the right career choice.”
All kidding aside, Tyler got a little sentimental as he recounted his rise through the ranks at the department. After serving on patrol overnight for about nine years, he moved to day shift before making detective and ultimately captain.
“There have certainly been some unforgettable moments throughout the years, like getting a conviction for a homicide or even for an assault,” he said. “Getting some justice for the victim really reminds you that’s why you do what you do with the hours you put in and the sleepless nights. That’s what makes it all worth it.”
Detective Andrew Fischer, who has been with the department almost as long as Tyler, shared a similar perspective as he reflected on 31 years in Mequon.
“Honestly for me, the moments when I’ve had people come back as long as years later and say thank you that made a difference for me,” said Fischer. “Thinking that I did something meaningful for them, like maybe helped them get things straightened out in their life, really make this business worthwhile.”
Remembering the person behind the people was also of the utmost importance to Officer Dennis Guttmann, who served first as a volunteer reserve officer before being sworn in as a police officer in 1991.
“It’s been a very fulfilling career because you truly see and witness life every day,” said Guttmann. “We, as law enforcement officers, see the whole gamut of human experiences, which is as much an honor as it is a challenge.”
The last day for all three members of the department, who have served a collective 99 years, will be Dec. 23.
“I don’t recall a time when we have had three long-tenured employees all retire at one time,” said Chief Steve Graff.
Graff spoke highly of each of the retirees, citing the numerous ways they have contributed to the department.
The following were among the accomplishments he cited:
Tyler investigated some major cases, including homicides, as a detective before promoting to captain, where he has managed the administrative division and played an integral part of shaping the department’s technology needs.
Fischer has spent many hours training the sworn officers in defense and arrest tactics and proper Taser usage; he also regularly provided training to the volunteer police reserve officers and assisted in teaching at the department’s annual Citizen’s Police Academy.
Guttmann spent 10 years as a reserve officer before being sworn in as a police officer. He is probably more well-known to many people from his years of teaching hunter, boating and snowmobile safety to hundreds of kids and adults.
“Certainly, we are losing a great deal of knowledge and experience that can’t be replaced immediately,” Graff said. “The good news is that while these men get to enjoy their well-deserved retirements, it creates new opportunities for other department employees who are looking to get promoted, or seeking other duties and challenges.”