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Former detective now deacon

As a deputy with the Jefferson Parish Sheriffís Department in Louisiana and later with the Colorado Springs Police Department, Lynn Sherman never thought he would be recommended for a program that sanctions an individual as an ordained deacon of the Catholic Church.ìI went from carrying a gun, teaching people how to shoot and kill, into the deaconate,î Sherman said. In 1989, he became a deacon for a Catholic parish in the Springs and provided spiritual assistance to his fellow law enforcement officers, who felt comfortable with him because of his background, he said.Sherman said his faith and Godís guidance have led him to where he is in life at this point, as the deacon of St. Benedictís parish in Falcon. The road has been interesting, to say the least. And it began in his birthplace, a town about 28 miles south of Boston.Throughout his childhood, Sherman frequently moved because his father was in the United States Coast Guard. Sherman said he struggled socially because of the constant change, and also had a tough time academically. After sixth grade, his parents sent him to a boarding school, where he learned how to integrate with new schools and new peer groups.Eventually, his family moved to New Orleans. ìIt was a culture shock,î Sherman said. However, the family found a new church that offered a minor seminary for high school students who wanted to become a priest. Sherman enrolled in the program and stayed for three years, until he realized he did not feel called to the priesthood. Sherman returned to regular high school his senior year, where he met his wife, Barbara, a ìcute ladyî who sat next to him. After their first date in 1963, Barbara told him she could not see him again ó her mother did not approve because he was a Yankee. But the displeased mother became Shermanís mother-in-law in 1968. About the same time, Sherman graduated from the University of Southwestern Louisiana with a degree in radio and television broadcasting, and then became the news director of a radio station in New OrleansWhen the radio station went from news to an all-rock, no-news format, Sherman left and started his own public relations firm. Sherman helped out a few political officials during election time, but he needed more business.ìIn 1971, I contacted the sheriffís office in Jefferson Parish and gave him a public relations proposal,î Sherman said. He met with the sheriff, who liked his proposal so much that he immediately had Sherman sworn in as a deputy. Sherman said he left the meeting as the departmentís new public information officer.As a deputy, Sherman. became adept at shooting a gun. He became the range officer; and, for the first five years with the JPSO, he held both the PIO and range officer positions.Later on, Sherman moved to the homicide division as one of the top-ranked detectives. ìI got an understanding of the dynamics of human life that most people are never exposed to,î he said.That exposure included a bullet to his leg. A police officerís wifeís nightmare is seeing another officer at the front door. ìWe had made up a specific phrase that I told the other officer to tell her so she would know that I was OK; but, to this day, neither of us can remember that phrase,î he said. By this time, the couple also had a daughter and a son.Two weeks after the bullet wound, Sherman went back to work ó- on crutches.During his 24 years with the JPSO, Sherman made strides within the department, which included helping to create an enhanced 911 system that used a computer dispatch to get all essential personnel ó police, firefighters and paramedics ó sent at the same time to the site of the emergency.Sherman said he eventually tired of life as a homicide detective. ìI was ready to hang up the gun and gun belt,î he said. ìI was at the point where I was ready to kill each day; not murder, but be prepared to shoot if necessary.îSomeone Sherman arrested had also put a contract out on his life. ìI was livid because it was only $500,î he said.Sherman retired from the JPSO and eventually moved to Colorado Springs. The CSPD had heard about his work with the dispatch system in Louisiana and sought Shermanís help for the departmentís own dispatch system. Sherman took a position with the CSPD, and worked with a team to implement an emergency medical dispatch system that ensured all first responders were trained in the same medical response protocol so that treatment could begin immediately once someone arrived on the scene, he said. After 10 years with the CSPD, Sherman retired in 1995.Aside from his position as deacon of St. Benedictís, Sherman and his wife, who live south of Simla, raise Alpacas. He also is a woodworker, which he described as ìgreat therapy.îSherman has also written two books and is working on a third ó a history of the St. Benedict parish.In 2006, Sherman became the parish director of St. Benedictís Catholic Church in Falcon. He said he has felt Godís presence throughout his life. ìGod has given me a certain set of skills and talents and experience,î he said. ìI know that it has all led up to this point, and Heís put me in a place where I can do something with it all.ìWhat binds it all together is my faith.î

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