Chief Russell Roark addresses the crowd
Chief Roark with the SC delegation, Rep. Ralph Norman, and other officials
Crowd comes out to honor Chief Roark for his nearly 60 years of service
Chief Russell Roark received the state’s highest honor in a ceremony Tuesday on the courthouse steps. House District 42 Representative Doug Gilliam headed up the effort to honor Roark for his nearly 60 years of law enforcement service. On hand to present Roark with the Order of the Palmetto along with Gilliam were Congressman Ralph Norman, State Senators Harvey Peeler and Shane Martin, Sheriff Jeff Bailey, Public Safety Chief Robbie McGee, and Mayor Harold Thompson.
Close to 100 people came out to honor Roark, including family, friends, church members, law enforcement personnel, and city and county elected leaders.
In his remarks, Roark said he has enjoyed his time in law enforcement and has no plans to give it up yet:
(audio below story)
The Order of the Palmetto is one of several awards the governor can bestow upon a South Carolina citizen. It is the state’s highest civilian honor and is presented in recognition of a lifetime of extraordinary achievement, service, and contributions on a national or statewide scale. An individual must be nominated for the Order of the Palmetto. This once-in-a-lifetime award may only be presented to natives or residents of the State of South Carolina.