BROOKFIELD, Conn. — The Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to promote Maj. James Purcell as the town's next police chief to replace Robin Montgomery, who is retiring from the top post at the end of December, according to WLAD-AM.
Purcell will begin as chief on Jan. 1, WLAD said.
Montgomery has served the town of Brookfield for over 16 years as chief. Serving as police chief was a third career, of sorts, for Montgomery.
Many in town may not know that on June 8, 1969, Montgomery, then a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps, was leading his platoon to a command post when they became pinned in a Vietnamese rice patty, taking heavy fire.
Making a split-second decision, Montgomery crawled across enemy lines, stood in full view of those who would just as soon kill him and singlehandedly waged an aggressive assault to take out a machine gun position that might do harm to his troops. Inspired by his bravery, the 30-member platoon — vastly outnumbered — surged forward and prevailed in battle that day.
Badly injured, Montgomery earned the Navy Cross, the nation’s highest award for valor in combat. He served for three years in the Marine Corps.
After coming back from Vietnam, Montgomery worked for 26 years with the FBI, ending his career there as special agent in charge of the Critical Incident Response Group (CIRG). The group was formed after the 1993 siege in Waco, Texas.
The CIRG provides expertise in crisis management, tactical operations, crisis negotiation, hostage rescue and other critical areas.
Click here to read the story at the WLAD-AM website.