City of Newburgh Marshal Russell C. Bevier was recognized by the City Council and members of the greater public for 51 years of dedicated service as a city auxiliary police officer on Monday, November 28. He was joined by his wife Elaine of 39 years on the night of the ceremony.
“I’ve worked with many, many officers who some have passed on, some have retired and some are still around but I felt it’s time for me to pass it on,” Bevier said. “I enjoy, now, still being the city marshal. Long as God gets me up, I have my faculties, I’ll continue.”
Applause rang out from the crowd that night and Councilwoman Patty Sofokles, Councilman Omari Shakur and Councilman Robert Sklarz shared their thanks for Bevier’s service to the city.
“I was glad to see him get the recognition, which he well deserved,” said Elaine. “He’s got a stellar reputation in town with the marshal work, and the auxiliary work and the 36 years with Central Hudson.”
Bevier, born and raised in the City of Newburgh, has worked for the city sanitation department, Mount Saint Mary College, in which he was the first minority worker there, and Central Hudson, which he retired from in 2010. He joined the auxiliary police on May 2, 1971, joined Central Hudson in October 1973 and became the city marshal starting on October 6, 2010.
For those who are not familiar with the roles and responsibilities of the auxiliary police, which is a volunteer position, Bevier briefly described what the roles and functions of the role were. “We’re like the eyes and ears of the police department. And our main function is crowd control, and traffic control,” said Bevier. As the city marshal, Bevier is now under the direction of the city court and mainly handles evictions and other related court orders. “That can be very hairy at times,” said Bevier.
Yet in several situations during the course of his career, Bevier, who at one point was allowed to carry a pistol while performing auxiliary duties, would be a part of several city police related matters. He shared that he would affirm with officers that he would have their back in the situation should anything unfold.
“I know many times, he was always pretty much one of the first ones to volunteer to go out and full duty for this, or for that, or whatever was going on around town,” said Elaine. “He would be pretty much the first one that would volunteer to do it. And be glad to do it too.”
With all the changes in administration and staff over the years in the police department and how the city has changed as well, Bevier was grateful to have served the city for so long. Now with the auxiliary police in the city, Captain Jesse Howard will assume the roles and responsibilities of Bevier and continue to lead and Bevier knew that Howard was up for the task.