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Pete Cumming honored for service in ceremony

Police Chief Pete Cumming, left, was honored with a plaque by Deputy Chief Frank Rubino.

STEVE REID
Editor & Publisher
sreid@lbknews.com

Close relationships, ceremonies filled with feeling and sentiment, and shared memories are the hallmarks of small-town life. Nowhere were the emotions of

The entire Police and Fire Departments honored Pete Cumming with a salute and area dispatch announced his retirement and his service.

appreciation and respect more present than when the entire Longboat Key Police and Fire Department came together to say goodbye to veteran Police Chief Pete Cumming, who retired on Friday following a 40-year career in law enforcement.

The event began with Pete’s wife, Diane, the entire staff of the police department, Town Manager Tom Harmer, Town Commissioner Ed Zunz as well as the Fire Department celebrating with cake, a plaque honoring his 12 years as Longboat’s Chief, and remarks by Deputy Chief Frank Rubino and retiring Chief Pete Cumming.

Cumming said that when he arrived on Longboat Key it was unlike anything he had ever encountered. He told Longboat Key News that he loved working in a place where he could form close relationships, get to know the community and feel and see a difference as a result of his efforts.

But the event went beyond the simple cake and compliments. While the Chief was kept waiting inside by Tom Harmer, the entire Fire and Police Department lined up outside and the Chief received an honorary salute as he walked about 50 yards past each member of the joint departments for the last time.

Cumming said he will not be bored and his wife recently retired as a physical therapist and they will be busy with the menagerie of animals they raise, which includes show winning Bengal cats, a group of 17 tortoises, miniature donkeys, and a few dogs.

Cumming was hired as Chief by former Town Manager Dave Bullock whom he credited in his remarks for giving him a chance with the position and serving as an inspiration and a mentor in leadership

Deputy Chief Rubino presented the Chief with a flag and with a final wave, Pete Cumming drove off in his Audi A7 to live out his retirement in his east Sarasota property of 15 acres.

 

Detective Major Robert Bourque, Deputy Chief Frank Rubino, Pete Cumming and Fire Chief Paul Dezzi worked together for years.

Longboat Commissioner Ed Zunz came out to thank the Chief for his service.

Last week, former Longboat Top Guns honored Cumming with a surprise visit: From left, Chief Bill Tokajer, Holmes Beach Police department, Chief Cumming, George Turner, past captain LKPD and past Chief of Brooksville PD, Chief John Kintz, ret LKPD, Martin Sharkey, ret Deputy Chief LKPD.

Pete and his wife, Diane.

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