Tryon honors hero bound for retirement

Published 8:00 am Friday, April 27, 2018

Police lieutenant to hang up badge after 25 years

TRYON — A Tryon Police officer, who town officials call a hero for her dedicated service, is retiring after 25 years with the force.

A reception will be held from 1-4 p.m. on Monday at the Harmon Field log cabin to celebrate Lt. Theda Rickman. Rickman began working with the Tryon Police Department as a telecommunicator and worked her way up to the rank of lieutenant.

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Rickman was hired by the Tryon Police Department in 1993, becoming records clerk in 1995 and administrative assistant in 2000. She was sworn in as a police officer in 2004, and was promoted to sergeant in 2011 and to lieutenant in 2014.

Tryon Town Council recognized Rickman last week, with the town presenting her with a proclamation, her badge and service weapon.

Tryon Police Chief Jeff Arrowood with Lt. Theda Rickman.

“The police department thanks Lt. Rickman for her 25 years of dedicated service to the town of Tryon,” Tryon Police Chief Jeff Arrowood said this week. “Through the years, Lt. Rickman has sacrificed her personal and family time for the job, including for court, investigations and extra duties. Lt. Rickman is going to be truly missed, and we wish her the best in her retirement.”

Commissioners and Mayor Pro Tem Bill Ingham also thanked Rickman for her service, and recognized her accomplishments over the years.

Rickman obtained her advanced training certificate through the North Carolina Criminal Justice Standards Commission, her criminal investigator’s certificate and her associate’s degree of applied science in criminal justice technology from Isothermal Community College.

“[Lt.] Theda R. Rickman continually built relationships with the entire community by showing love, support, understanding, stability and compassion,” stated the town’s proclamation. “[Lt.] Theda R. Rickman has shown the community what it means to be an outstanding officer, a role model, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, and most importantly, a hero.”

Fellow employee Blake Arledge said Rickman is respected across the law enforcement community, as she worked her way up from dispatcher to lieutenant.

“I am extremely sad to see Lt. Rickman leave,” said Tryon Town Manager Zach Ollis. “While I know it is what she is looking forward to, I recognize the loss it means for the town of Tryon. Lt. Rickman has become a cornerstone of our police force and a true hero for our community. She is going to be extremely hard to replace, and we will feel this loss for years to come.”