Every month, KX News recognizes first responders making a difference in North Dakota. To kick off this year, we met with those at the city of Lincoln police and public works department to learn more about how they keep their community safe.
Officer Andy Zachmeier has been in law enforcement for 33 years.
“It was constantly told to me and my brothers growing up that you live your life to a higher standard, live your life to a higher meaning, and that public service is the highest service you can live to,” Zachmeier said.
He was ready to call it quits a few years ago after serving 21 years in the Bismarck Police Department.
“The nature of being a police officer right now is not positive. It is not fun. It is hard. It’s challenging, and it’ll probably even get worse,” Zachmeier said.
But the Lincoln Mayor and Police Chief encouraged him to join their force to help the growing community.
Zachmeier says Lincoln still faces the same problems bigger cities experience.
As of the 2020 census, Lincoln is reported to have about 4,300 people.
“A bad guy in Mandan tomorrow can be a bad guy in Bismarck the next day and the day after be here,” Zachmeier said.
Police Chief Robyn Krile also knows the challenges of being in law enforcement today.
“When I go out there and I go on these calls and help the citizens, I feel the sense of why I got into this career in the first place and I forget about that negativity and I feel like I made a difference in a person’s life no matter what that call is that I responded to,” Krile said.
Krile says the city has grown over the past few years and currently has eight officers, double what they had in 2019.
“We’re the foundation for the police for the future fore the city of Lincoln and to be part of that I think is very meaningful,” Krile said.
While the police department protects the city, the public works department keeps citizens safe in other ways.
This time of year, that means snow removal. Ryan Glass says he loves the work.
“For me it’s the freedom, being able to hop into a piece of equipment and do something different everyday,” Glass said.
The Public Works Department says during snowy days, it helps for citizens to not park on the road, since it takes longer to remove snow.
And to show our station’s appreciation for all the work the Lincoln Police Department and Public Works employees do, KX brought them sandwiches Wednesday afternoon.
Reporters Maddie and Adrienne and photogragher Seth got to enjoy some Erberts and Gerbert’s with the first responders before they head back out to work.