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Catawba County Sheriff Coy Reid runs a tight ship in his office. If you're family, it's a little tighter.
"I'm one of those dads that expect more out of their sons than they do anybody else," Reid said. "I'm a little harder on them, but I try not to get too involved in anything job related with them."
Reid has three sons and they each chose to follow his footsteps into law enforcement.
"We have huge shoes to fill," said Cory Reid, Coy's youngest son. "I'm not trying to fill his shoes, just trying to walk in his footsteps. He always did people right and that's what I try to do."
Cory has worked at the Catawba County Sheriff's office with his father for the past two years. He was inspired to pursue a career in law enforcement at a young age by his dad.
"When I was about 9 or 10 years old, I remember always seeing people come up to my dad telling him they appreciate what he did," Cory said. "Everybody knew him, appreciated him and thanked him, so that was my original reason."
The eldest son, Jason Reid, shares those memories as well.
"We would go to softball games, go out to eat, maybe be at church on Sunday and I noticed that people from all walks of life would come up and ask for his advice, for his opinion, for his help," Jason said. "That stuck with me. I initially thought that's what it was like for everybody's father, but I figured out it had to do with him being in law enforcement."
Jason is a Lieutenant with the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office who supervises the Narcotics Division.
"I've always worked in the field of narcotics," Jason said. "I noticed when dad was working as a narcotics investigator the stories he came home to tell were always more interesting. He always got a better reward working in narcotics than any other job â€” that's why I kind of focused my talents on that."
Jason also supervises the Lincoln County SWAT team, as his dad does in Catawba County. Cory works alongside Coy on the STAR team here.
In July, the Catawba County Sheriff's department will get another dose of family tradition. The Catawba County Board of Commissioners has approved a new hire â€” Coy's middle son, Sean.
"I know the challenge already," Sean said. "My dad is the worst at not wanting any bit of favoritism. I already know that whoever he feels is the toughest training officer is who he will put me with. He will go out of his way to not make other people feel like I'm getting the job because I'm his kid. Cory already told me, you don't just walk into his office and sit down, you make an appointment like any other officer."
Even though Coy doesn't show favoritism in the office, his sons agree that there's a feeling of extra trust when they're working together.
When Jason was working as an officer with Newton Police, he and Coy worked on the multi-jurisdictional task force together.
"My father and I were involved in two shootings together," Jason said. "That's nothing that he and I have ever talked about outside of it, but you could tell that there's an extra level of trust there."
Whether working side-by-side or with different departments, the Reid's all enjoy their careers in law enforcement, and always have something to talk about at family get-togethers.
"I think we have a closer bond all being in law enforcement, we all understand what the other one is doing," Coy said. "I have as much trust and faith in them as any other officer. I know they are more than capable of doing it and they take care of business."
Each son views Coy as a role model, both in and out of work.
"There's not too many people I look up to, but he's one," Sean said. "There's nothing negative you can say about that man."
Following his footsteps may have not been easy, but it was the right decision for the Reid's.
"I'm glad that I made the decision that I did to follow him into law enforcement," Jason said. "I guess my best day in law enforcement was when he was elected as Sheriff."
They each share an admiration and understanding for one another as sons, brothers, and officers, especially in regards to their father.
"He's one of a kind," Cory said. "Not just because he's my dad. He really is amazing."
Coy shares the same admiration for his sons.
"I'm proud of all of them," Coy said. "I'm glad they chose an honorable profession and that they're helping the citizens of Catawba County and Lincoln County."