Beginning Oct. 1 you will be able to see the latest uniform modification if you see a member of the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office. In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the sheriff’s office has decided to actively participate by replacing their standard gold badges with pink customized Scioto County deputy sheriff badges.
“The look is definitely different and the pink badges are definitely noticeable on the black uniform,” Scioto County Sheriff Marty V. Donini said.
Donini said all full time sworn deputies are being issued two pink badges each to be worn on their uniform beginning Saturday through Oct. 31, recognized nationally as Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
“We’ve always participated by wearing the pink shirts and other things and when I saw this piece of mail come out soliciting us, I thought it would be a good idea,” Donini said. “Plus the fact that we have two employees that are breast cancer survivors, we just thought it would be something neat to do.”
Donini said breast cancer awareness is something he takes very seriously.
“Several employees who work with the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office are breast cancer survivors and at least two others have mothers who are also breast cancer survivors,” Donini said. “I too have a niece who is also a breast cancer survivor and I have personally witnessed, through her, the courage, strength and support these survivors and their families need in order to endure the process.”
One of those cancer survivors is one of the friendly smiling faces you see when you come into the office. That smile belongs to Shelly Montgomery who says the celebration of Breast Cancer Awareness Month always brings back memories of her own bout with breast cancer.
“I was diagnosed last year. It was Oct. 29 when they gave me the news,” Montgomery said. “But I was one of the lucky ones because I caught it early enough to where I didn’t have to have the chemo(therapy). I had three surgeries done in six weeks. I just had the lumpectomy and then I did 21 treatments of radiation.” Bev Craig, who works in the kitchen is also a breast cancer survivor.”
By purchasing the pink badges for the deputies a portion of the proceeds was donated to the “Pink Ribbon Girls” organization whose mission is to “balance the fear and uncertainty that breast and other women’s reproductive cancers bring to individuals and families by providing free direct services, education and support.”
“How could we not participate?” Donini said.
The National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc. said – “While most people are aware of breast cancer, many forget to take the steps to have a plan to detect the disease in its early stages and encourage others to do the same. We have made a lot of progress but still have a long way to go and need your help.”
“I feel wonderful,” Montgomery said. “I feel lucky.”
The Portsmouth Police Department will also be participating in breast cancer awareness.
“We don’t have the pink badges, but the officers are approved to wear pink t-shirts under their uniform or the pink ribbon on the uniform that day (Oct. 14),” Operations Captain Lynn Brewer said. “It is totally at their discretion, but they are approved to wear those.”
Brewer said the decision as to which to wear is easy for him.
“Several of us wear the pink t-shirts because they’re brighter,” Brewer said.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.