By Debbie Adams
Vinton Police Sgt. Michael Caldwell paid tribute to Interim Police Chief Fabricio Drumond during the 2020 Police Awards dinner held on September 22 at the Vinton War Memorial by sharing a story about his background.
“On December 7, 2005,” Caldwell said, “a young Marine corporal who was an antitank assaultman with the 1st Mobile Assault Platoon, 6th Marine Regiment, was on patrol in the Hummer he commanded near Camp Al Qa’im, Iraq. A war zone is, of course, a very dangerous place – especially for children. Death and danger are everywhere, but kids are resilient and seem to always make the best of their situation. On that day, a group of Iraqi children had left the shelter of their homes to go play outside. Unfortunately, enemy insurgents had decided to place the weapons of war in their path. An improvised explosive device (IED) detonated, critically injuring several of the children. The young Marine dismounted his patrol vehicle and immediately began administering lifesaving first aid as medical support was called in. The lives of the children were saved. That Marine was our new interim chief, Fabricio Drumond.
“Joining our department as a patrol officers on December 14, 2009, Chief Drumond has distinguished himself as a leader and humanitarian. Those who have worked with him have undoubtedly witnessed his approach to policing. He always treats those he serves with compassion, while still doing what is necessary to restore order. He embodies the quote, ‘You can be tough as nails and still be a gentleman,’” Caldwell continued. “Chief Drumond has always stepped up to any challenge. Since joining the department, he has served as corporal, sergeant and, in 2017, he was promoted to deputy chief of police, where he has excelled! He is a leader, and just as importantly, he is a friend to all who know him.
“On behalf of the Vinton Police Department, we would like to say ‘Thank you’ for all you have done and continue to do,” Caldwell said.
Drumond was appointed by Vinton Town Council to serve as interim police chief in July 2020 when Chief Tom Foster was confirmed as the U.S. Marshal for the Western District of Virginia.