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Dec 23, 2014 11:02 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press

After 20 Years On The Force, East Hampton Town Cop Retires

Dec 23, 2014 11:02 AM

While driving through his new home of the Sunshine State, former East Hampton Town police officer Joe Markowski reminisced by phone last week about his 20 ½ years with the department.

“It was pretty emotional,” he said of his final day with the department on December 12. “I’m going to miss doing the job of course, but the people. I’m really going to miss the people.”

Mr. Markowski first signed on with the East Hampton Town Police Force at the age of 28, after a friend talked him into taking the test.

“I was 21 at the time, but 28 when I finally went into the academy,” he said. “I kept putting it off and putting it off and finally I went to the town and they sponsored me through the academy.”

As a field training officer, firearms instructor, armorer, child safety seat coordinator, and department property officer, Mr. Markowski said he “couldn’t put his finger on just one thing” that he found to be the most rewarding throughout his 20-plus years.

“Being able to save someone’s life,” he said, “is the most rewarding thing about the job. But it’s also the baptisms and the birthday parties and the weddings of all of these people that you’ve known forever that become more like family.”

Mr. Markowski, a Pierson graduate and fourth generation Sag Harbor resident, and his wife Darlene sold their Sag Harbor home this past year and are looking forward to a Florida retirement.

“It was tough to say goodbye,” Mr. Markowski said, explaining that his mother’s maiden name is Bennett and his family has been living on the East End since the mid 1600s. “It hasn’t really sunk in yet and the decision wasn’t easy, but I’m looking forward to it.”

Once settled in Florida, Mr. Markowski said he plans to relax and brush up on his golf game.

“I plan to do a lot of boating on the boat I’m towing right now,” he laughed. “I’m not sure if I’d work for another [police] department down here. If the right job came up, maybe I’d take it. But I’m really looking forward to doing the other things I enjoy.”

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Congrats and thank you for your service
By bigblue84 (89), Hampton Bays on Jan 1, 15 5:38 PM