Easton City Council took time out of its Wednesday night meeting to honor former police Captain Michael Vangelo, who retired in late July.
Vangelo likely would have led the department when Chief Larry Palmer retires. But a few months ago, he announced he'd be moving on to take a job with Lafayette College's public safety department. Capt. Carl Scalzo has taken his place as the department's second in command.
"I thought I’d do 30 years with the police department," Vangelo said Wednesday. "This became available and I took it."
Vangelo "helped make our police department what it is today," Mayor Sal Panto said. "He instilled upon the men that you don’t have to strike a big stick. You can solve situations with a tone of voice and how you deal with people."
Councilman Jeff Warren, who heads council's public safety committee, thanked Vangelo for his service.
"I knew nothing about public safety," when joining council, he said. "It really was my hope that you would have become chief someday. I say all this with a heavy heart. The hours upon hours that this gentleman took to clean graffiti…this gentleman has done wonders for our city."
Vangelo said any praise he gets is the result of teamwork, and of the officers patrolling the city's streets.
"They’re the ones making Larry and Carl and [Capt.] Dave Biedler and myself look good," he said.