Spring Valley’s finest: Sgt. Doug Burcham honored for 30 years of service with police

Burcham volunteered time for Special Olympics, to work with special needs students at JFK, Hall schools

Recently-retired Police Sgt. Doug Burcham was honored Monday during Spring Valley’s city council meeting for his 30 years of service.

Police Chief Adam Curran said Burcham started in 1991 and was promoted to sergeant in 2007.

Burcham, a Marine veteran, worked as a field training officer and child safety seat technician. He spent several years volunteering with Special Olympics, as well as working with special needs students at John F. Kennedy Elementary School and Hall High School.

“He spent a lot of time working with kids, he enjoys working with them,” Curran said.

Curran also added Burcham trained him to be an officer.

“I want to thank him for everything he taught me along the way,” the police chief said.

Burcham was grateful for the plaque. He thanked everyone he worked with at the city and Spring Valley citizens.

“Last but not least, I want to thank my family. Police officer work is hard enough, but family take it worse than we do,” he said noting shift changes and missing family moments.

“I want to thank my wife and my son, especially.”

Burcham concluded by reading a poem dedicated to police officers:

We remember the officers who changed our lives,

The men and woman who protected us day and night,

People who respect for their dedication to the cause,

For when faced with danger, they never even pause.

We remember the officers who always stood true,

Whatever the color of uniform, brown gray or blue,

With pride and integrity they say “To serve and protect”,

For the giving of their life, we offer our respect.

We remember the officers who we never really knew,

Persons strong enough to answer the challenge are few,

With heavy hearts we mourn the officers in eternal rest,

There’s more to these people than the badge on their chest.

- Brad Miller

Derek Barichello

Derek is a Streator High and University of Illinois graduate. He worked at the Albany-Herald in Albany, Ga., and for Sauk Valley Media in Sterling, before returning to his hometown paper. He's now news editor for both the NewsTribune and The Times.