Friday marks a “momentous day” in the history of the Stoughton Police Department, as Chief Paul Shastany becomes the first-ever member of the SPD to graduate from the , Executive Officer Robert Devine wrote in a statement posted on the town’s website and the department’s Facebook page.
Chief Shastany departed for this invitation-only, elite law enforcement training session at the FBI National Academy in Quantico, VA back in early January.
While there, the Chief was as a section leader, serving as one of just six section leaders representing the 260 law enforcement officials attending this session of the FBI Academy.
He also completed a —a 6.1 mile run through a hilly, wooded trail, best known as “The Yellow brick Road.”
“This is a huge occasion for all of us and we couldn’t be prouder of him,” Devine writes of Shastany’s graduation from the Academy.
“This experience was not some much about academics but rather about the character and commitment of the people,” Shastany wrote on the Stoughton Police Department’s Facebook page.
“The world is a better place because of the type of people that come here and serve their communities. Good bye Quantico and thank you for introducing me to so many heroes.”
Shastany is set to return to the SPD on Monday, March 19, Devine said.
In Shastany’s absence, Devine filled in as the department’s day-to-day leader, serving as the town’s acting police chief.
“This has been a tremendous learning opportunity for me personally and I have gained as much over the last several months as I have given. I can only hope that I made Stoughton and the members of our department proud during what was a fantastic time in my career,” Devine wrote in a statement.
Shastany and Devine’s full Facebook posts can be found below:
Quantico update- I cannot believe it is finally over! All the work is done. Wednesday was our final fitness test and I am pleased with my physical progress. I shaved off over 2 minutes in the 1.5 mile run. I more than doubled my push ups and feel like a kid again! I'm committed to maintaining my fitness when I leave.
I cannot tell you how great this experience has been. I have many new friends. W...e have come together as a team and will leave as individuals.
I have to recognize one man for his leadership, New Jersey State Police Captain Al Ponenti. I have never met a more selfless leader in my life. He is a senior member of the SP and SWAT team commander. He has coached, motivated and pushed me from the first physical challenge day to my final fit test. He could have easily aced every challenge. He is a fitness maniac! Instead, he stayed with me all the way.
He epitomizes the best in this noble profession. He leads by putting others first and taking care of his needs after.
There are others, several classmates that inspire me to be a better man. The humility and compassion they show for others is beyond words. Their sacrifice and dedication to creating safe communities has cost many of them in one way or another. Several of my friends have been shot. One still carrying a bullet near his aorta. Another, a sheriff that recently lost his best friend when he was gunned down. We were there when he rubbed his name off the memorial wall.
A friend from Greece, was badly burned by an exploded molotov cocktail that engulfed him in flames and hospitalized him for two weeks in December last year.
And last, my close friend from Egypt, Tarek, a Colonel with the Egyptian Police is the kindest man ever. He is returning to his country not knowing what the future of his career will be. And so the stories go.
To wrap up my comments, this experience was not some much about academics but rather about the character and commitment of the people.
The world is a better place because of the type of people that come here and serve their communities.
Good bye Quantico and thank you for introducing me to so many heroes.
Executive Officer Devine:
To the people of Stoughton: Tomorrow [Friday] marks a momentous day in the history of our department as Chief Shastany becomes the first ever National Academy graduate the SPD has ever had. This is a HUGE occasion for all of us and we couldn’t be prouder of him. It also marks an ending, of sorts, of my three month run as your Acting Chief of Police. I wish to thank all of the wonderful residents that sent me cards and well wishes and the other fantastic department heads that have assisted me along the way during this time. I would also like to thank Chief Shastany for having the faith to leave the department in my hands during his absence. Lastly I wish to thank the men and women of our Stoughton Police Department who make being a leader a joy and continued to deliver the best service they could to our community. This has been a tremendous learning opportunity for me personally and I have gained as much over the last several months as I have given. I can only hope that I made Stoughton and the members of our department proud during what was a fantastic time in my career. Thanks to you all.