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Sheriff Bob Moore doesn’t usually become emotional while responding to a call from dispatch, but then again, he isn’t usually tricked into responding.
Due to a little teamwork between those from the Antelope County Courthouse, the sheriff’s department and Bright Horizons, Moore was surprised on Monday morning with the inaugural Community Partnership of the Year Award.
“Our award goes to someone in our community that goes above and beyond their call of duty and who has partnered with Bright Horizons to help survivors of abuse,” said Tracy Baker, criminal justice liaison and shelter manager with Bright Horizons in O’Neill. “This person saw there was a need for inmates to sit down and talk with an advocate about their past and/or present. This man has changed the lives of many people. He is the reason that Bright Horizons started this award.”
Moore, who received a standing ovation from the nearly 100 people crowded into the courthouse’s basement meeting room, said he usually has time to prepare a speech. Instead, he simply spoke from the heart.
“All I know is, at the end of this journey, when I stand before my Lord and there are two things you can hear, ‘Depart from me, for I did not know you,’ or ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ I want to be the ‘Well done, good and faithful servant,’ ” Moore said. “That’s why I do what I do and it’s not possible without people like you, like Tracy, Marlon, my friends, my coworkers and especially the other elected officials. There are so many in this room that have been very supportive and I just thank everybody. That’s my hope, to just keep looking at people the way God would look at people, and that’s why I do what I do.”
Moore said there are many challenges in life occurring with those he works with from that as an officer of the law to being an elected official. He said it’s important to treat everyone with respect.
Several Antelope County inmates said they owe a great deal to Moore.
“I know I would never have changed or reached out for help, let alone actually received (and probably would’ve ended up dead),” wrote one inmate. “His compassion just flows down through everything and everyone around him. And for that, I am so very thankful.”
Three other inmates currently serving in a female dorm wrote, “Sheriff Moore has helped in so many ways. I believe the way he runs his jail has even saved some people’s lives. Bob treats us as humans and knows that we are humans who’ve only made mistakes.”
The letter went on to say, “When I told Bob that I had a desire to change, he baptized me and showed me how to live with Christ. He also is all about getting inmates the help they need. He invites so many people in for us. Though he is often busy, he will always make time to help anyone who needs it. All of us inmates cherish Bob Moore.”