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A Legend retires from the Apopka Police Department


Sergeant Robert Mark: A 50-Year Veteran of Law Enforcement

Sergeant Robert Mark of the Apopka Police Department is the proverbial salt of the earth. He is the type of person that needs to be cloned and sprinkled throughout a community. Mark retired yesterday after 50-plus-years of service in law enforcement.

“Sergeant Mark was a well-respected mentor to dozens of Apopka police officers,” said Apopka Mayor Joe Kilsheimer. “They appreciated his honesty, his forthrightness and his unwavering commitment to doing the right thing.”

In his career that spans over six decades, Mark did nearly every job, and held every rank at police departments from New Hampshire to Florida.

He began as a Military Police Officer for the United States Air Force in 1964. After his discharge, he spent the next 28 years with the Hamptom, NH Police Department (HPD), and the New Hampshire State Police. In that time he went up the ranks to become the Police Chief of the HPD.

In 1993, Mark moved his family to Florida to become Police Chief of the Ocoee Police Department, and in 2002 he moved to the APD.

Mayor Joe Kilsheimer: "He was a well-respected mentor to many Apopka police officers."

One of his final jobs at the APD was that of Desk Sergeant... a job that he is not only well-suited for, but also looks and sounds the part. It almost seems like he was brought in from Central Casting to play a Desk Sergeant in a network television police drama. The booming New York accent, firm but fair persona, elder statesman appearance, and a heart the size of Apopka fit the bill as the first contact many visitors to the APD front desk would see.

But Mark’s passion was his time on patrol.

“I was a detective, but I hated it,” he said. “Walking a beat was my art form. Getting to know the people. Communicating well was the secret to successful patrol.”

APD Police Chief Mike McKinley applauds Mark’s career.

“Sergeant Mark is a true professional and has been a great public servant for many years. His positive attitude, caring personality and willingness to help everyone will truly be missed by all the members of the Apopka Police Department, as well as this community. It has been a tremendous honor and a privilege to work with someone that has had such a distinguished law enforcement career. As he moves on to the next chapter in his life, I wish him the best.”

APD Captain Randy Fernandez worked closely with Mark, and enjoyed the energy and attitude he brought to the job.

“Sergeant Mark has been a pleasure to work with,” said Fernandez. “His character and his love for the men and women of the agency are his most endearing traits. Sgt. Mark's daily smile and contagious positive demeanor will be sorely missed throughout the Apopka Police Department. “

And it is those men and women of the APD that Sergeant Mark will never forget.

“What I will miss most are the people,” he said. “We have a lot of officers from diverse backgrounds. They are very bright and the APD is a very professional outfit. I will miss seeing these guys on a day-to-day basis.”

An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Sargent Mark was with the Manchester Police Department.


Apopka Police Department, Sergeant Robert Mark


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