HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Connecticut has 100 new state troopers.
They entered Dunkin Donuts Park in scorching heat as recruits and left as rookie troopers ready to protect and serve.
The governor signed off on $6 million in funding for this and two more classes of troopers.
With marching cadence, the ceremony kicked off in nearly 100 degree weather.
29-year-old Johan Frias of Milford was one of the graduates. His wife Perla Russo and father Bernd Kern of Miami Florida told News 8 they are very proud.
“It was tough, six months, seven months but we’re so proud of him. His dream came true,” said Russo.
32 weeks of training, 1,500 hours of both online and in-person classes due to COVID all culminating in this ceremony.
Trooper Michael Honeywell is the class speaker of this 130th Connecticut State Police training class.
“It’s [the] most difficult time to want to be a cop but the fact that this class applied at a tune when it’s more dangerous than ever… speaks volumes about the character of each and every one of the men and women in the 130th training class.”
Among the 100 graduates; 76 are men and 24 are women.
More than half and have college degrees. 20 have military experience. 15 are bilingual and 27 are part of minority groups.
“As we found out this last year, it’s easy to hit the pictures right over the plate, you got to be ready to hit the curveballs,” remarked Governor Ned Lamont.
The trainees in their dress wool uniforms received badges, many from family members who are also in law enforcement.
Trooper Frias will now be stationed at Troop F in Milford.
Kern says he will always worry for his son’s safety.
“Every job is a danger in a way but somebody has to do the job. I think he can handle it well,” Kern said.
The youngest trooper is 22 years old. The oldest is 49.