Beloved Dayton Police Department retiree, and former Northmont School bus driver, Rick Shiverdecker, is battling very aggressive, debilitating, secondary progressive Multiple Sclerosis.
Rick began his career in the Dayton Police Department in 1982 . He was assigned to Central Business District patrol. After serving 5 years in that capacity he was assigned to Special Investigations as a night detective.
Then he found his true calling and was chosen for the mounted patrol unit where he worked for almost 10 years until the unit was disbanded. Rick trained new horses that were donated to the unit, including his favorite horses, "Chaos" a Thoroughbred race horse and "Traveler" (pictured) a Kamp Kern Quarter Horse. Traveler was his most trusted long-time partner who was retired to lush pastures in Greenville, but sadly passed away a short time later due to congestive heart failure.
Ricks reputation with training horses and his love for mounted patrol was well known. He taught "Mounted Patrol and Tactics" classes for many police departments including London Police Department, Columbus Police Department, Five Rivers Metro Parks, Hamilton County Sheriffs Office, Butler County Sheriffs Office, Warren County Sheriffs Office, and the West Chester Police Department.
After the mounted unit's disbandment Rick was a class counselor for the 89th recruit class at the Dayton Police Academy. Rick soon became a fulltime instructor there. During this time Rick was stricken with a rare, aggressive cancer found in his tongue. Rick underwent surgery to have the cancer removed and continued to work while being treated with high levels of radiation. Not being one to let anything get him down, Rick took a motorcycle tour to California and called it "The Rolling Tongue Tour". Having survived cancer, he remained at the Dayton Police Academy where he was a Firearms Instructor until his retirement in February 2011.
Not only is Rick well loved by his co-workers, but is also loved by his community. During his career in law enforcement he received over 50 letters of appreciation, 5 department citations, 7 department commendations, 1 award of merit, nomination to the One Hundred Club, Respect for Law Award, Officer of the Month, and the Steve Whalen Top-Flight Award, and American Red Cross Hero Award.
After retiring from the Dayton Police Department, Rick was employed by Northmont Schools where he drove a school bus. Rick thoroughly enjoyed driving a bus and interacting with the students and his fellow bus drivers. Not only did Rick supplement his retirement by driving a bus, but he also bought a tractor and would shovel snow, remove trees, or cut grass for friends and neighbors in the Deweese neighborhood of Dayton.
Rick is an avid outdoorsmen who loves paddling, hunting, shooting, civil war re-enactments, repelling, and hiking (especially with his Australian Heeler, Nixy). Rick also loves spending time with his grandchildren taking them to parks, museums, car shows, fairs, and camping. This is how Rick spent the few years of retirement that he was actually able to enjoy.
Then it happened, Rick started stumbling and losing his balance which quickly progressed to losing strength in his arms and legs. After years of trying to find a a name for what ailed him, Rick was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. Unfortunately, MS has taken Rick's ability to remain employed as a bus driver or even work odd jobs with his tractor. He battles constant severe back spasms and is quickly losing function of his arms and legs. During the last visit to the neurologist Rick was informed that he now has secondary progressive MS and will physically and cognatively continue to decline. A hero to so many could now stand a few heroes of his own during this difficult time. Please show your support to one of the most charismatic, influential, accomplished officers to patrol the streets of Dayton.
Rick is in desperate need of an electric wheelchair, handicap van, ramps, and other medical necessities to give him back the freedom and quality of life he deserves. Please consider a donation to help a hero!
There will also be a pancake breakfast fundraiser for Rick Shiverdecker at the FOP Lodge #44, 4275 Powell Rd, Huber Heights on Saturday, March 21, 2015 starting at 8:00 am. $10 a plate includes all you can eat pancakes, sausage, and coffee.
Thanks so much for your love and support!
- Marilyn Seitz
- Sam Cox
- Shannon McCullough
- Pamela Nelson
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