FREER - Effective Saturday at midnight, Freer Police Chief John Spillers will officially be retired from law enforcement.

Spillers was with the Freer Police Department for 29 years.

"It was a pleasure to be your chief," Spillers said during a retirement party in his honor. "It seems longer than 29 years."

Spillers started his law enforcement career when he returned to the states from the Navy.

He got a job with the Jim Hogg Sheriff's Department as a county deputy. He went to the police academy and graduate in 1980. After graduation, he worked in several law enforcement departments including Duval and Guadalupe Counties.

In August 2008, Spillers left his chief position in Freer to go overseas and be a Navy police trainer. In 2013, he returned to the Freer PD and remained there ever since.

"We're honored and proud to have had him here for so many years," said Freer Mayor Arnold Cantu. "He's done an outstanding job for us...He's been dedicated and professional to his community and his family."

Spillers enjoys being a public servant through law enforcement. He's helped the community more than anything. His community is what the reason he's been an officer and chief for years.

"This particular chief position means you have to work the streets. You have to be able to back up your guys when they need help," he stated. "I don't have the physical ability I used to have and I don't want to hurt anybody. It's a public safety issue."

While the end of his law enforcement career neared, Spillers decided he wasn't really done with law enforcement and the City of Freer. Once his retirement starts, Spillers will become a reserved officer, a volunteer position, with the Freer PD.