ENFIELD: With three days to go before she left the Enfield detachment of East Hants RCMP, it was clear Const. Cheryl Ponee was having a hard time coming to terms with the fact she was leaving the community.
Const. Ponee, well-known for being the community policing officer at local schools in East Hants, had her last day at the detachment on May 30. She is transferring to the Kingston RCMP in the Valley, where she will begin her new life.
She’s going to miss seeing the kids and people in the community the most.
“I will miss the kids the most, especially watching them go from elementary through graduation,” said Const. Ponee on May 28. That’s what I will definitely miss.”
This year will mark 20 years in as an RCMP officer, and most of the time officers only stay stationed at a detachment for five years. Const. Ponee stayed in Enfield for eight years—longer because of the community response.
“They (community) wanted me to stay in the schools,” she said. “It’s time for a change. I’m going to take the Valley as a new chapter, a new beginning in my life.”
With Const. Ponee leaving, it also means her four-legged sidekick that was adored by many of the children , Const. Sully, is going too. She joked whoever replaces her will have to have a dog as a sidekick.
She has seen a lot of changes in her eight years in Enfield in policing and how social media has become a more prevalent problem in schools with the kids.
“I’ve seen the issue with social media and kids increase over the last eight years,” she said. “It’s been 80 per cent of my job.”
Const. Ponee wasn’t just a police officer—she also did zumba and fitness classes in the community, more recently with The Barn in Elmsdale. Last week, Rawdon District School had her out to give the whole school a zumba class.
“I loved every day coming to work,” said Const. Ponee.
She said if she was given a chance to conclude her policing career in Enfield, it’s something she would jump at.
“I loved it here,” said Const. Ponee. “If I could have finished my policing career here I would have.
“I’m just very sad to be leaving. I really loved Enfield.”