PARKERSBURG - Helping people and doing the best he can.
That's why Hans R. Kochersperger has been serving with the Air National Guard for the last 18 years and recently became a deputy with the Wood County Sheriff's Office.
Kochersperger graduated 13th out of a class of 44 cadets from the West Virginia State Police Academy on April 26 with an average score of 95.156, said Wood County Sheriff's Chief Law Enforcement Deputy Shawn Graham.
Photo by Mandi Cardosi
Newest sheriff’s deputy Hans R. Kochersperger, left, and Chief Deputy Shawn Graham, right, stand in front of the Wood County Courthouse Wednesday afternoon.
Kochersperger joined the Wood County Sheriff's Office in December and was assigned to be a court security officer.
Kochersperger's current position on the force is a field training officer on day shift.
He grew up in Lubeck and attended Parkersburg South High School where he graduated in 1995. He participated in wrestling, soccer and ROTC at South.
The 36-year-old has been married to Susan for 13 years. The couple's daughter, Emma, is almost 3 years old.
His father, Randall, is pastor at Bethel Baptist Church in Parkersburg and part of the reason he and his wife met.
"We call it an arranged marriage," Kochersperger said.
The couple were introduced by their parents and have been together since, he said.
After working at Wharton Nissan for the past 14.5 years, Kochersperger said it was time for a change. He has helped others through his work with the Air National Guard for almost two decades, but wanted to do more.
He returned from Afghanistan in January 2012.
"I help out the people who need help and do the best I can," he said.
His advice to new deputies taking the entry-level test and going through the police academy is to get used to being trained for field work.
"They'll yell at you all the time but it just gets you used to working outside (on the force)," Kochersperger said of the academy.
Kochersperger, a technical sergeant with the Guard, has been on several assignments, including flood relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.