Sheriff Sproul: Shining Star – Volunteer Chaplain Vinson Hill
Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017
Law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to serve and protect the citizens of their communities. They are great community partners who have some major unseen stars within their organizations. These unseen stars do some very important work, behind the scenes. In many cases, they, and the work they do, is publicly unrecognized but they keep on faithfully serving. One such key person in the Dougherty County Sheriff’s Office is Chaplain Vinson Hill.
Chaplain Hill has been a volunteer Chaplain for the Dougherty County Sheriff’s Office for ten years. He began his career with us in 2007 as the Inmate Chaplain. However, in 2009, I appointed him to serve as the Staff Chaplain, as well. During his tenure, he has volunteered many hours of service to both the inmate population and Sheriff’s Office personnel during times of pain, suffering, and grief. I am happy to report that his most recent venture has pushed him into more of a community involvement role for the Sheriff’s Office.
This year, our county has been ravaged by several major storms that resulted in the need for some major behind-the-scenes volunteer efforts. Chaplain Hill, who had previously received Critical Incident Training, National Incident Management Systems training, and Incident Command System training, was called upon to use his training to represent the Sheriff’s Office and to serve in the area of receiving and distributing thousands of various survival and restoration items that were donated by generous individuals and groups from across Georgia. Chaplain Hill was the Sheriff’s Office liaison who spent his mornings, noontime, nights and weekends making a positive impact on the lives of those most affected by the storms’ damage. When storm #4 hit us on April 5, Chaplain Hill was asked by World Vision Collaborative Community Outreach Minister (and Assistant Fire Chief) Eugene Anderson to oversee the temporary shelter at Westover High School, which he did. Chief Anderson reported that Chaplain Hill represented the Sheriff’s Office very well, saying, “It’s a great feeling to have someone, in this case, volunteer Chaplain Hill, to be so intimately involved serving the hurting and recovering citizens in and around Dougherty County, Albany, Georgia.”
Now, there is more. Not only has Chaplain Hill been intimately involved in the receipt and distribution of storm related survival items, he has also been very instrumental and very active in providing storm victims with spiritual survival services. He has been a willing servant to encourage, pray for, and meet the faith needs that unconsciously take a back seat to the victims’ immediate needs during catastrophic times such as we experienced in January and April.
In closing, Chaplain Hill’s hours of service to the inmates, Sheriff’s Office personnel, and the community, reach far beyond what we see. He is often unseen, but working. His extraordinary commitment and willingness to volunteer immeasurable hours help make the Dougherty County Sheriff’s Office community partnership a success. His extraordinary efforts are duly noted and appreciated. He is truly a behind-the-scenes servant of God.