Meet John Pellizzari who with wife Becky moved to town from Bowie, TX, to assume the Deputy job with the Red River Marshal’s Office.

John  began a law enforcement career in April of 1980. He was the youngest officer to ever graduate from the DPS (Texas Department of Public Safety). When he retired 28 years later in August 2008 to take a job as DOT compliance officer with an oil and gas company, he thought he was done with a career that he had enjoyed.

It wasn’t long, however, before he realized he may have retired too soon. He came to miss the day-to-day activities of being a peace officer but what he really missed was the comradery of the people he had worked with over the years.

One of those people was Red River Marshal David Smith who knew Pellizzari from their days with DPS.

“David has been after me for years to come up here,” John says, adding that he had only been here one time many years ago, just passing through. “We took a scout troop up to the Chicago basin between Durango and Silverton the year I retired and came back through here.”

His wife Becky had visited Red River in 2011.

“I had a partner killed in the line of duty and we were close to the family, and they came up here for the kids to go skiing. I didn’t come because of working.”

When the offer came from Marshal Smith to join the Red River department, Becky knew John missed law enforcement.

“She knew I’d retired too young. At the time I retired, the situation with the oil fields and my special talents dealing with trucking regulations... the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. You know: you’ve got to be happy.”

Medical problems led to his termination by the oil company. “They sent me a text message to fire me. Not a phone call but a text!”

“When I left the oil company I also had a consulting company. Problem was the companies wanted your services, but they didn’t pay when you billed them.”

He went to work for Bubbl, a Dallas ride-sharing company he described as “good people.” According to their website “The company drivers are off-duty/retired police officers only, licensed state peace officers – use-of-force trained, courageous but most of all courteous and honorable.”

“David and I have the same values and ideas, we think a lot alike. He’s a great guy. I’m looking forward to working with him.”