George White is honored by West Springfield District Police Station during National Volunteer Month
(SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA) - Greenspring resident George White has spent over four years volunteering at the West Springfield District police station as a Volunteer in Police Service (VIPS). His service to the station is not only necessary, but likely a service many are not aware of. On Friday, April 13, White was one of only two volunteers who were awarded a special commendation recognizing exemplary performance at the West Springfield station at the annual Fairfax County Police Department Volunteer Programs awards ceremony. According to the Fairfax County Chief of Police, Colonel David Rohrer, volunteers at police stations throughout the county complete the tasks of 31 full time jobs.
White volunteers approximately 70-80 hours per month working under a logistics specialist at West Springfield police station. He helps to maintain the over 85 police vehicles at the station by doing minor maintenance on-site at the station - changing tires, replacing batteries and lights. He also takes the vehicles in for regular servicing to a garage in Newington, Va. for oil changes, tire rotations, and larger maintenance services. "These cruisers are essentially their offices, where the officers conduct their business," White said, stating the importance of operating vehicles that perform as expected. The services don't end there; White is willing and able to step in with whatever is needed at the station including setting up electronic signal boards or helping with general projects around the station.
After having spent 30 years in the Air Force, White finds that there are many likenesses in police work and military work. "I volunteer because I like the similarities to my military background and I feel like I'm doing something important to the police mission," White said. He spent 18 of his 30 years in the Air Force working in the Washington, D.C. area, and 11 of those years at the Air Force headquarters and the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon. He was also part of a Civilian Advisory Committee in the Orange Hunt neighborhood of Springfield, Va., where he lived for 38 years prior to moving to Greenspring in 2010. It was through this committee that White met a VIPS who encouraged him to apply for the position, which understandably, is subject to an in-depth background investigation. "I've liked the work very much," said White. "And the commanders are really appreciative and caring." One example of the concern for the volunteers is evident through the requirement by the West Springfield station commander that the VIPS wear bullet-proof vests for safety while driving police vehicles to the garage.
"I do jobs that need to be done," said White. Volunteers like White completed jobs in police stations throughout Fairfax County that totaled over 64,000 hours of service in 2011.
About Greenspring: Greenspring, one of 16 Erickson Living full-service retirement communities, is situated on a scenic 108-acre campus in Springfield, Virginia. The community is home to 2000 residents, many of which reside in the 1405 independent living units. At Greenspring, a robust complement of resident programs and facilities promote an engaged, fulfilling lifestyle that is reflected in resident satisfaction levels that exceed the industry average. Life at Greenspring offers a true sense of community and is an exciting alternative to the typical retirement community. Additional information about Greenspring can be found at www.ericksonliving.com.