Retiring Police Chief Not Retiring From Work Force Entirely

KFSM (VAN BUREN) -- With 32 years of experience in the books, Van Buren Police Chief Kenneth Bell is leaving his post.

"This is a very surreal time for me," he said, "It's exciting, (but) it's sad at the same time."

Another word Bell used to describe the last three decades is "uneventful", as he joked during Monday's (June 26th) city council meeting.

Bell's career began in 1985. He was just 25 years old.

"(When) you've been in the same employment for 32 years, obviously, you have a love for your job and a love for your community."

Through those 32 years, Bell made many friends.

"When you come in every day; you meet the same people, talk to the same people, (and) have coffee with the same people."

He doesn't know what he'll do when he doesn't see them every day.

"You can't stay in this job forever," he said.

At 58 years old, 'forever' is still far away for Bell.

"I was just ready for a career change to something completely different from law enforcement."

"I've got my real estate license," he said.

Before now, Bell had never even thought about real estate. Now it's the next chapter and the end of an "uneventful" 32 year career in law enforcement.

"I've had incredible support from the public and city as a whole, and I'm very thankful for that," he said.