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University police captain will set down his badge and pick up his motorcycle

By Hannah McDonald
Dec. 1, 2016

On July 1, at the conclusion of his 35th year with the Utah State University police department, Capt. Steve Milne will set down his badge for the last time.

Milne has been a fixture in the department since its inception in 1982. He is second in seniority only to Chief Steven Mecham, who will retire in January.

“I figure it’s time,” Milne said. “It’s been great, but I’m at the point now where I kind of want to enjoy life. It’s especially hard this time of year when you’ve got the football games and stuff. My wife and kids go to the games, but I’m having to work them. I’m ready to go and enjoy it with them.”

Milne joined the department as a university student in 1982. At the time, he was working on a degree in education and sports coaching. That summer, an opening came up for a full time police officer. Milne was accepted for the position, and he has worked in the department ever since.

Emergency management coordinator Judy Crockett has worked with Milne for almost all of the past 35 years. She is not thrilled about his retirement.

“It’s going to be awful,” Crockett said. “I’m going to miss him so much. You will not meet anyone that’s more devoted, dedicated and on the side of the victims as he is.”

Crockett places high faith in Milne’s abilities as a police officer. She has the “utmost respect” for him, she said.

Crockett recalled one case Milne worked involving multiple victims.

“He gave out his cell phone number,” she said. “He gave out his home phone number. He was like, ‘Whatever you need, call me. I don’t care what time of day it is.’”

For Milne, retirement is bittersweet. 

“You certainly have your highs and lows,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of funny stuff, a lot of bizarre stuff, a lot of tragic stuff. But it’s been good. For the first bit of it, I wasn’t in a cubicle; I wasn’t in an office. I was getting out and meeting people. Helping people is a big part of it, and I really enjoyed that.”

Milne said he is looking forward to spending his retirement enjoying family company and crossing items off his bucket list.

“I’ve talked about maybe learning to play the guitar,” he said. “Or picking up a second language. I would love to go stand on the Great Wall of China.”

Milne’s other goals include learning to fly a plane and traveling around the United States.

Eventually, he wants to visit all 50 states on his motorcycle. He only has about eight more to go. 

As for his legacy at the university police department, Milne is confident that whoever fills his and Mecham’s spots will have full support from the rest of the employees.

“Whoever comes in will have a great team to work with,” he said.