The Dallas Police Department grew its ranks on Friday when it added 30 new officers in a graduation ceremony.
Members of Class 355 got their badges as the department faces many challenges, including a pension crisis and a shortage of officers. It takes nine months in the academy for the recruits to become officers.
Every new officer had a different reason for joining the force.
"After 7/7 happened it was a calling,” said Ofc. Gideon Yorka, referring to the deadly ambush shooting last year. “It wasn’t something I made up, it was a calling."
Gabriel Orosco grew up in Duncanville and said he always wanted to be a policeman.
"Used to walk around and say, ‘Hey I just want to be a cop.’ So finally of age, fulfilled that dream, so here I am today graduating,” Orosco said.
The latest class is graduating to the streets at a time when police are under pressure to quell rising business robberies and homicides with fewer officers on the force.
"We're scrutinized. Everything that we say, everything that we do, no one is happy with the decisions that we make. But I just ask that each one of you will wake up every day and give the best of who you are,” said Dallas Police Chief Renee Hall.
That's what Matthew Humphrey intends to do as he follows in the footsteps of his dad, Deputy Chief Bill Humphrey
"Look up to him in every way as a man, as a father, as a friend, I couldn’t ask for a better dad,” said Ofc. Matthew Humphrey.
Bill Humphrey said it was a day full of emotions.
"As a parent I’m scared to death. You don’t want your kids out there seeing the stuff you see,” Bill Humphrey said. “But I’m excited for him because I️ know it's the right place, the right time for him. He'll do well."
The 30 from Class 355 report for duty to their assigned substations on Saturday – just hours after officially becoming officers.