Guest Speaker Bruce Colville then entertained us with recollections of his 43 years in Victoria Police.
As a 17 year old from rural Beechworth, Bruce originally planned to join the armed forces, but was advised by ‘a grumpy old sergeant’ at the recruiting office that he was not suited to the army.
A visit to Career Advice office put him on the path to VICPOL.
Initially told he was too young, Bruce (with broken collarbone from minor vehicle accident), 2 weeks before start of year 12, was called in for interview.  First question- have you recovered? Second question-are you still willing to join? The group of candidates was whittled down, with Bruce in the final group. 
His Cadetship began in the D24 Communications Centre at Russell St HQ, then William St, and was followed by 20 weeks of training at the Academy in Glen Waverley. Still only 17, Bruce was finally sworn in only 4 days before graduating as a member of the 5th squad of 28 from the Academy.
Advised to ‘go somewhere busy’, he was posted to Prahran,a new station completed only a month and a half earlier. This multicultural community was an eye opener for a country boy. Important advice was ‘don’t park under the high rise commission flats’ and ‘watch for things being dropped’
His first 10 years in the Prahran/St Kilda /Richmond area coincided with a rise in cocaine and heroin use. He also learned a lot about dealing with multicultural communities in this time, taking time to get to know people, allowing them to express themselves.
Next move was to Doncaster, a developing outer suburban area transitioning from orchards to residential. It was not uncommon for people to find themselves unable to afford construction of their dream homes, working very long hours to keep the dream alive. 
By this time Bruce and Pam had 2 children of their own, and drug use was moving into the suburbs so the decision was made to move to country policing. Alexandra was conveniently located between Bruce’s family in Beechworth, and Pam’s in Mooroolbark.
The first week was spent in a car with another member, then it was time to work solo. Distances travelled were very different, so more time spent in the car. Dealing with the families one lives with brought a change of emphasis. Bruce went on many cub camps with Tom F, when he carried the cashbox, and sometimes even managed a little sleep.
At the end of his career, Bruce noted that it was humbling to be thanked for being approachable, and thanked the community for the Certificate of Appreciation presented on his retirement.