[cleeng_content id=”390717129″ description=”Read it now!” price=”0.49″ t=”article”]KEARNEYSVILLE – Pastor John Unger was sworn in last week as a chaplain with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Reserve. He saids he will focus on giving support to officers, who encounter difficult situations in the course of their service.
“The men and women who are out there every day are putting their lives on the line, and they see a lot of stuff that has tragedy in it,” said Unger, who also serves as Democratic Majority Leader in the West Virginia Senate. “They experience a lot that they may not want to share with their families, but it might help to talk to somebody about it. The chaplaincy is a way for them to be able to work through some of those concerns and issues.”
Unger was sworn in Jan. 2. He along with two other recruits, two of which have been approved by the County Commission, are the first chaplains in the new program, which is run through the Sheriff’s Reserve.
Sheriff Pete Dougherty said that having chaplains volunteer with the department will also provide a valuable service in some of the more emotionally difficult situations the job entails.
“We want to help with the officers who may come across tragic and difficult situations, but also to have them help with families,” he said. “We have unintended deaths where someone dies when when no one was home, and we have to inform the next of kin. So having someone with a spiritual background is very helpful.”