BILOXI, MS (WLOX/AP) - Sheldon McKay has wanted to work in law enforcement for several years. Now, he's doing just that at the Biloxi Police Department.
Special equipment lets him transcribe police reports and make follow-up calls concerning ongoing investigations. Helping the police is a special calling for McKay.
"I don't think that the police get enough recognition for the positive things they do out and about in the public. The little things people take for granted that the police are there to protect and help," McKay said.
He walks without assistance in familiar hallways, but uses the walking cane when he needs to. As for the job?
"I love it. I actually hate the fact that I'm off on weekends. I'm ready for Monday morning every morning, and I've never had a job that had me so excited to come to work daily," McKay exclaimed.
His boss, Police Chief John Miller, is equally impressed.
"He's doing a great job. His work ethic is certainly high, it's in place. He gets along very well with all the investigators that he works with. He just doesn't let the disability stand in his way," Miller said.
That wasn't always the case for McKay.
"I had been a very independent person my entire life and it was like, all of a sudden, all that changed. I was forced to depend on people for stuff I had taken care of my entire life," McKay recalled.
These days, he's just one of the guys.
"For the most part, I'm not treated any different than anybody else that can see. It's a bunch of guys, a bunch of officers and we laugh, we joke, we play pranks on each other and they don't cut me any slack," said McKay.
Even though Sheldon has attained a major goal of his, his dream job, so to speak, by coming to work for the Biloxi Police Department, he doesn't plan on stopping there. He has even bigger goals to achieve in the future.
"I am happy with what I do. I feel it's preparing me for what lies ahead. I have ambitions to attend law school one day, so this is gaining hands-on, real world experience to prepare me for that end game," McKay said.
Oh, and there's just one other thing.
"The only thing I can't do for myself is drive, but given enough time, I'm pretty sure they'll come up with some way for me to be able to do that too," said McKay
No doubt about that. No doubt at all.
Earlier this month, the Biloxi Police Department was honored by the Rehabilitation Association of Mississippi for its efforts to provide employment opportunities for the disabled. Miller accepted the award at a ceremony in Jackson.