The second group are those who have strong spiritual
convictions; they are glad to have a chaplain with them. The
third group are neutral. Dick says that as he and Gloria have
sought to graciously serve, they are seeing an increasing level
Gloria generally accompanies Dick to death notifications.
She provides much-needed hugs and consolation. At times,
a notification has precipitated a medical response in the one
receiving the bad news, and her experience as a registered
Dick and Gloria on the scene frees officers to get back to
their patrols sooner, as Dick and Gloria stay with the family
until friends, neighbors, and relatives can come to support
As a Bible-believing chaplain, Dick relates to several
Biblical characters and precious truths. He says that just
as God led Abraham’s servant on his journey to find Isaac
a wife (Gen. 24), “as we are available, the Lord leads and
enables us to serve.” The statement in Hebrews 13: 5 that
God will neither leave nor forsake believers gives Dick
and Gloria confidence that He will guide and accompany
them. They also find strength in 1 Corinthians 15: 58, which
promises that believers’ work for the Lord is not in vain.
“We may not see immediate results,” says Dick, “but we are
confident we are serving as God enables.” He also points to
Psalm 142: 4, where David says that no man cared for his
soul. Dick says, “Our goal is that we might minister to the
souls of our officers and to the community.” He says that
most people outside the law enforcement community have
little understanding of the pressures and problems officers
Though Dick is a retired pastor, he teaches a personal
evangelism course, two math courses, and a science class
at Faith Baptist Bible College in nearby Ankeny, Iowa.
Between these classes and his ministry at Urbandale Baptist
Church, Dick finds it challenging to “block out the kind of
time I would like to have to invest with our department.”
Yet in times of crisis, he and Gloria make themselves
While the days following Officer Martin’s death were
anything but typical, Dick and Gloria carried on their usual
National Police Week 2017
Chaplain Dick Dayton works with Sgt. Dan Stein, a
supervisor with the Urbandale PD’s Administrative Ser-
vices Division, to plan a program for the local annual Peace
Officers Memorial Service during National Police Week.
The 2017 National Police Week is May 7–20. Policeweek
.org explains the history and purpose of National Police
Week: In 1962 President John F. Kennedy signed a proclamation designating May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial
Day and the week in which it falls as Police Week.
Since then, tens of thousands of law enforcement officers around the world have gone to Washington, D.C., to
participate in events that honor those who have died in the
line of duty.
An annual memorial service began in 1982 as a gathering in Senate Park of approximately 120 survivors and supporters of law enforcement. The National Peace Officers
Memorial Service is one in a series of events, including a
candlelight vigil and seminars.
GARBC Chaplain Dick
Dayton serves with
the police department
in Urbandale, Iowa.
His duties include
and assisting at death
scenes and in crisis