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Sergeant Philip G. Hoh officially retired from the City of St. Marys Police Department on Sept. 1, 2011, marking 27 years of distinguished service to the citizens of St. Marys. In addition, Hoh had worked for five years in another police department.
Hoh was honored for his years of service during the St. Marys City Council meeting on Oct. 17, when he was presented a plaque by St. Marys Police Chief Todd Caltagarone and received a retirement police badge, as well as a Pa. Senate citation from state Sen. Joe Scarnati.
Caltagarone also recognized Hoh's wife, Sandy, and daughters Maria and Samantha, for their sacrifices over the years.
"I want to thank my family. They've made a lot of sacrifices for me," Hoh said.
He added that in the six weeks since he has retired, he has not missed a single family function.
"I'm a father again and that's my greatest joy," Hoh said.
Sandy was presented with a bouquet of flowers, while his daughters received a single flower and a teddy bear figurine/candle.
Among the most notable accomplishments during his police career was Hoh's work as a D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistant Education) Officer, where he tirelessly committed to working with young people to keep them safe and off drugs, according to Caltagarone.
Hoh's police service included working major crime cases, drug taskforce, public relations, developing and presenting programs, grant writing and managing special projects such as aggressive driving and Click It or Ticket. His efforts in the last two helped reduce motor vehicle crashes and serious injuries from crashes.
Hoh was also recognized over the years for a number of accomplishments, including receiving a lifesaving citation for his involvement in rescuing a person from a vehicle fire.
One of his premier contributions to law enforcement was achieving his certification as an instructor by the Municipal Police Officersâ€™ Education and Training Commission, and instructing young cadets at police academies at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford campus and at the Indiana University of Pennsylvaniaâ€™s Punxsutawney and main campus.
He currently holds the position as president of the Bucktail Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police, which he has held for 20 years, and the position as Chairman of the Trustees for the Pennsylvania State Fraternal Order of Police Lodge.
Hoh graduated from Edinboro University before joining the St. Marys Borough Police Department on June 19, 1984. Prior to that, he served as a part-time police officer for the former St. Marys Borough from Nov. 28, 1981, until he accepted the full-time position as a police officer. The consolidation of the Borough of St. Marys and Benzinger Township in 1994 formed the current City of St. Marys, where Hoh continued to serve.
On Oct. 18, 2004, Hoh was promoted to the rank of sergeant where his duties expanded to include first-line supervision. Caltagarone said he "cared for the everyday police officer on the street with the knowledge that if he took care of them, they took care of the community."