Sgt. Scott Kristiansen received a fitting farewell as he retired from the Buffalo Grove Police Department after 30 years of service. He received hugs, hand shakes and thank yous from friends, family, fellow officers and firemen during a tribute on his final day, Monday, Dec. 31. He then received a police escort with lights and sirens as he and his family drove away.
"It is bittersweeet," said Kristiansen, standing outside the police department, saying goodbye to friends. "I have worked with some of the finest people..."
He paused, getting choked with emotion, and hugged his wife Yvonne tightly.
"I'll miss the people the most," Kristiansen said. "We've accomplished a lot in the past 30 years."
His family was by his side throughout, including his wife Yvonne, son Eric, 23, and daughter, Kelly, 19.
"We're just so proud of him," said Yvonne.
Scott Kristiansen was humble and grateful for the support.
"This has been a great place to work, and there are great people in this village and this department from top to bottom. Having this kind of family makes it hard to leave," Kristiansen said. "I've had the opportunity to work with some of the finest people. They are people who care enough to make Buffalo Grove one of the finest places to live in the region and in the state."
His co-workers praised Kristiansen for his three decades of service to Buffalo Grove. His next role will be with the Illinois Department of Transportation.
"Scott was a big traffic guy," said Dept. Chief Steve Husak. "His main thing was traffic enforcement, but he also did a lot of public safety initiatives like bike safety programs and DUI enforcement. We're known regionally and nationally for our safety programs. Scott helped us win lots of awards. He brought a wealth of experience to the job."
Cmdr. Jim Newton said that Kristiansen had done a lot for the department.
"Thirty years went by very quickly," Newton said. "Scott is a great guy. He will be missed."