Letter: Investing in our youth
This letter is to publicly thank Sheriff Darrell Warren and Mr. Gary Rippel for investing in Gloucester’s youth.
I recently had the opportunity to spend a week chaperoning a group from the Boys and Girls Clubs nationwide for the Cal Ripken Experience in Maryland, where at-risk youth learn strong character and leadership lessons through baseball. I witnessed my special group flourish in their decision making skills, perseverance, kindness, encouragement and good sportsmanship. It is amazing how well children grow when strong, committed adults are 100 percent present in a mentoring relationship.
I am grateful that Sheriff Warren and Gary Rippel recognize this and live it out on a daily basis. Sheriff Warren is a longstanding board member of the Gloucester Boys and Girls Club (that Gary Rippel manages), and prioritizes strong mentoring relationships and protection by staffing the club and Gloucester schools with deputies through the DARE program. Long before he was sheriff, Darrell Warren was a regular Lunch Buddy in Gloucester elementary schools and now encourages his staff to join him in doing the same.
It is critical for a safe and moral community to provide youth with positive role models who are actively involved, encouraging and under the wings of the next generation. Thank you, Sheriff Warren, for the opportunity to represent the Gloucester County Sheriff’s Office in Maryland. Thank you, Gary Rippel, for it is partly because of your purposeful personal investment of self that all of Gloucester can be especially proud of the 19 fine young people who participated and were example setters to their peers. They are living examples of what a quality mentoring relationship produces.