OSWEGO, NY – The Port City’s new police chief was sworn in Wednesday afternoon.
It’s still Tory DeCaire; the pomp and circumstances just made it official.
Fire Chief Jeff McCrobie presided over the swearing in ceremony for both the Oswego Police and Fire department recruits and promotions in the Common Council Chamber at City Hall. The room was packed with friends, family and co-workers.
Mayor Randy Bateman administered the oath of office.
“It’s a very special day for all involved,” the fire chief said.
McCrobie said he has worked with DeCaire for many years as they both climbed the ranks in their respective departments.
“The city is getting a real gem here,” he said. He went on to describe his friend as a proven leader and excellent police officer, “and a fine gentleman.”
The police chief’s father and mother, Peter and Barbara, held the Bible as he was officially sworn in. He was also accompanied by his wife and daughter, Lilly and Sophie.
“Captain DeCaire has been known to me for a long time. He started his career in 1998 when I joined the council. So I’ve had ample opportunity to watch his progression. I was very pleased that he submitted his application for promotion to chief, and I don’t think I could have picked a better candidate,” the mayor noted prior to administering he oath.
“I am truly humbled and honored to be sworn in as the city of Oswego’s chief of police,” DeCaire said.
He thanked the mayor for having confidence in him. He also recognized former chief Michael Dehm Jr. who served as a role model, mentor and friend over the years.
“On a personal note, I’d like to extend my thanks to my mother and father, Barb and Peter DeCaire, for giving me among other things a great work ethic, which helped get me here today,” he continued. “To my wife, Lilly, (thanks) for understanding the long nights, the missed holidays and birthdays; I guarantee there will be plenty more of those to come so…”
He also thanked his daughter, “Who at eight and half months old can’t understand a word I’m saying right now. I ask for your future patience and understanding when dad can’t take you for ice cream because he has to meet with a community group about issues she doesn’t understand, or he has to work late nights because bad people are doing bad things. That is why this is for you and for children just like you; so you may all grow up in a community that is safe and wonderful, similar to that which we all here remember growing up in.”
“Just remember, this is our city, our neighborhoods. Together we can make a difference. I will do my best to serve you as the chief of police,” DeCaire pledged.
Sgt. David Lizotte was promoted to the rank of captain.
“We just did his interview last night. I said, OK I’m going to promote you, do you want to come tomorrow and be sworn in? And he said, ‘Sure!’” the mayor said about the new OPD captain.
Two new officers also joined the police force. Scott Patterson and Michael Baker took the oath after Lizotte.
Three members of the fire department also received promotions Wednesday.
Jon Chawgo was promoted to the rank of deputy chief.
Dave Engle went from lieutenant to captain and firefighter Allen Chase was promoted to lieutenant.
“When Tory was growing up, he was never a problem,” his father noted. “We didn’t really expect him to become chief of police.”
“We never thought he’d be in this position,” he mother agreed. “He started out going to college to be a school teacher. He got half way through, and changed his mind. I think he will make a very good chief, he’s fair.”