Oceanside CA— A new plaque was unveiled today at the Veterans Association of North County building in honor of the men and women of the Oceanside Police Department who served in the building when it was the departments headquarters.
“I didn’t have the opportunity to work in this building but I’ve heard a lot of stories about this place and I imagine that someday when the veterans are sitting here and the walls start to talking, they are going to hear some interesting stories.” said Oceanside Police Chief, Frank McCoy. “One of the things the police officer of this city will cherish is this turned into a very positive use for the building and our veterans.”
The Chief said there were about 65 police officers in 1972 working out of the building “and they were bursting out at the seams when they moved.” The department now has 220 officers working out of the current location which was to be a “10 year” temporary location.
OPD has been in their current location, a former grocery store and a Miller’s Outpost for 13 years.
Steve Scarano, who retired from OPD in 2002 as a Captain, is the man behind the idea of the new plaque. “We are not here to honor the building. This building is just a vessel, a container to hold all of us and the things we stood for.”
John A. Keys, representing the California State Firefighters Association’s Drum and Pipes Corps, played Amazing Grace on the bagpipes as he led a procession to the plaque.
“I want to invite everyone to touch it, I want you to put your DNA on it so that people in the future will know that you are part of it. said Mr. Scarano
Steve said it took him about 3 to 4 months to get everything together but it wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for two anonymous donors who financed the plaque. The plaque is located just inside the door of main entrance to the VANC building on the north wall.