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Top First Responder: Thomas Arriaga

Sept. 26, 2012 at 4:26 a.m.

Thomas Arriaga was chosen, along with Jay Schultz, as one of GC's Top 5 First Responder for the work they put into keeping the Golden Crescent a safe place to live and work.

Thomas Arriaga and Jay Schultz were nominated together by Gary Smejkal.

About Thomas Arriaga

Age: 28

Position: DPS Tropper

Family: Wife, Sarah, married 9 years. Son, Tyler, 3.

Thomas Arriaga was chosen, along with Jay Schultz, as one of GC's Top 5 First Responder for the work they put into keeping the Golden Crescent a safe place to live and work. In Gary Smejkal's nomination letter, he wrote, "They work highway interdiction and have been responsible for taking down numerous loads of drugs and bulk U.S. currency... They both have a strong reputation amongst their peers as being teachers."

When did you decide you wanted to be a DPS trooper?

When I was getting out of the Marine Corps, I looked into law enforcement. I decided being a state trooper represented being among the best law enforcement officers in the state. So, from then on, I made it my goal to be a Texas state trooper.

How long have you been doing this?

I have been a DPS trooper four years.

What is the most gratifying part of your job?

Knowing that every day I meet new people and have the opportunity to protect and serve the citizens of the state of Texas.

What was the hardest part during your training?

The hardest part for me was being away from my family.

How do you de-stress from work?

By spending time with my family and friends.

What hobbies/interests do you have?

I enjoy fishing, hunting and riding my Harley.

Who is your hero and why?

My hero is any person who dedicates his or her life to doing the right thing and upholding a value system that includes integrity, honor and respect for themselves and others around them.With holidays around the corner, what is on the top of your wish list this year?

To make sure my family has a great holiday!

Did you believe in Santa Claus?

Of course! I've always believed in Santa Claus. What are three things that you could not live without?

The support and love from my family, friends and co-workers.

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