CLEVELAND — Friday afternoon, Cleveland Police Third District Commander Tom McCartney walked out of the Chester Avenue building for the last time.
“It’s the greatest job I could have ever asked for and I loved being a cop,” said McCartney, who retired Friday after almost 30 years with the Cleveland Police Department.
McCartney, who joined the department in 1989, climbed up the ranks from patrolman to commander. First he was commander of the First District, then commander of the Third.
McCartney spent his entire career at the Cleveland Police Department.
“It’s the greatest job I could have ever asked for," McCartney said.
McCartney has accomplished a lot, but has seen even more.
“The inhumanity in the world’s greatest nation, it really eats you up,” explained McCartney.
“We will never police our way out of violence," he said. "It needs to be a community effort from all corners."
McCartney gathered people from all corners and launched a program aimed at stopping violence by identifying a young person with a non-violent felony and helping the youth and family.
“We want to get our hands into that child’s life and stop it before it graduates to violence,” said McCartney.
The program is now set to get federal funding. “That would be one of the few unfinished projects,” said McCartney. “I will be involved, just not in a uniform."
“I loved being a cop,” said McCartney.