Officers welcome new 'little sister' with open arms - News, Weather & Sports

Officers welcome new 'little sister' with open arms

Shannon Hall is currently in training to be a Bardstown police officer. Shannon Hall is currently in training to be a Bardstown police officer.
Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin
Bardstown Police Officer Tom Blair Bardstown Police Officer Tom Blair

BARDSTOWN, KY (WAVE) - For a new recruit joining a police force is an exciting and life changing moment. For Shannon Hall it's a much different experience.

She is the first new officer who will patrol the streets in Bardstown since the murder of Officer Jason Ellis on Memorial Day weekend.

Fresh out of the police academy and still in training for two more months before she can patrol on her own Hall says she's never felt like an outsider, especially since the night Officer Ellis lost his life.

"I didn't work with Ellis, but I worked the same shift. I went home before he did, but that morning when it happened they called and said you need to come back, you're a part of this, you're part of us, you need to be here," Hall said.

Hall served eight years in the Army, drove a truck, and taught school, Now, at the age of 40, she says she's found her calling. And the fatal shooting of Officer Ellis didn't change her mind.

Hall said, "It didn't deter me. I think I'm more motivated now and more on my toes to be aware of my surroundings."

Bardstown Police Chief Rick McCubbin said he loved Hall's character and desire, from the moment he met her, "She was ready to take this career on even prior to Jason, but her being thrown in the middle of this as a recruit, she is still 100 percent ‘I'm ready to do this!' In other words it's affected her like it did us, but it didn't scare her from it."

No fear at all - just more determination.

"I think it would be up to people like us to make [Bardstown] safer for my child to live in, that's my motivation. I want my daughter to feel safe. So I'll do what I can so that she does," said Hall.

Hall feels love everywhere she goes in Bardstown, the same town where she graduated from high school. She also feels an extra outpouring of support for those in uniform for the past two months, even making her a bit of a social media star, "Ten to 15 Facebook requests, friends daily, from people I don't even know. Just wanting to say ‘hi,' ‘we're proud of you' and it's been wonderful," said Hall.

Even better has been the warm reception everyone on the force in Bardstown gives her every day.

Hall said, "They have taken me in as one of their own - like their little sister."

Maybe her favorite, her field training officer, Tom Blair, a 10 year veteran who started his training career with Jason Ellis as a student and loves Hall's sense of humor and, "The willingness to learn. She has an outstanding attitude toward any criticism I give her," Blair said.

So Shannon Hall steers her way into a new career with a department dealing with distress, but also a small town that cherishes more than ever those who keep them safe.

"I think that after [the death of Officer Ellis] the whole community came together. Like everybody supports us and each other. It's one big happy cozy family in Bardstown."

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