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Retired Veteran, Grandpa Joins KCPD Police Academy

Publish Date 05/30/2023

By the time most police officers reach 58 years-old, they are retired or close to it. Al Robertson is just getting started.


The grandfather is in the police academy as a member of the 177th Entrant Officer Class, training to be an officer. It’s not his first time in uniform.


“I served my country for 28 years honorably, and I want to do the same for my community,” Robertson explained.


Robertson served in the U.S. Army, deployed in Operation Desert Spring, Operation Noble Eagle, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Retired from the military, Robertson could have done many things. He chose to be purposeful.


He chose to help strengthen Kansas City through service.


“I’m not doing it for a paycheck,” Robertson said. “I didn’t serve in the military for a paycheck. I want to serve my community the same way I served my country.”


At KCPD, officers can only serve until age 65. Robertson will have just seven years before he’ll have to stop. The seven years are worth it. Since he was a child in the Columbus Park neighborhood, Robertson wanted to emulate the officers whose relationships with residents made lasting impressions.


When a neighbor joined KCPD a few years ago as an officer, she began encouraging Robertson to chase down his dreams.


Today, Robertson is passing and must pass the same physical and mental tests as all other recruits. They are close to his children’s age, and while that gap is large, the camaraderie is real.


“We’ve got a bond,” Robertson said. “I’m up to speed on some of the things they do. Sometimes, they might forget I’m 58.”


The 177th EOC will graduate in May.


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