To Serve and Protect: For Shewmakers, Public Service Is A Family Affair
Father And Daughter Serve Side By Side On HPD
Tabitha Shewmaker is the Harrodsburg Police Department’s newest officer. A recent graduate from the Kentucky Department of Criminal Justice Academy, she earned both the Academic Achievement award as well the Recruit of Distinction award.
Now she’s joining her father, Patrolman Michael Shewmaker, on the HPD. It’s believed they are one of the few—if not the only—father and daughter working for the same police department in Kentucky.
“It’s funny how things work out,” Tabitha said.
But it’s not funny to anyone who knows anything about her family. The Shewmakers have a history of public service. Her grandfather served as a firefighter with the Harrodsburg Fire Department for over 20 years.
Michael Shewmaker has been working in law enforcement since 1990, starting as a dispatcher before becoming a patrol officer in 1991.
“I’m not sure my mom was thrilled when I get into this line of work,” he recalled.
In 1998, he left the HPD for a position at Versailles, where he retired in 2011. He unretired in 2013, rejoining the HPD. In 2014, he became a student resource officer and has been back patrolling a beat for the last year and a half, he said.
Not many people get the chance to retire when they’re 41 years old, and Michael was asked why he went back to work.
“I missed the camaraderie with other police officers,” he said. “I still enjoy helping people.”
“You enjoy it too much,” Tabitha tells her father.
Now he gets to work with his daughter. For that, Michael said he’s grateful.
“We’re just happy to get the opportunity to work together,” he said. “How many families get that chance?”