MERCERSBURG, Pa. -- This month, Mercersburg will have a new police chief, one with nearly four decades of experience with the Pennsylvania State Police.
"I felt that I was not ready to retire totally ... The opportunity presented itself and I thought I'd give it a try," said John Zechman, a retired state police sergeant. "I think it is an opportunity for me to lend some of my experience to Mercersburg and they could help me keep busy."
Zechman, 61, was among nine applicants to replace Larry Thomas, who retired earlier this year after about 15 years as chief, Mayor James Zeger said. There were applicants from the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh areas, Connecticut and New Jersey, as well as some closer to home, he said.
The Personnel Committee narrowed the list to three who were interviewed and it was Zechman's breadth of experience that made the difference, Zeger said. The Mercersburg Borough Council voted unanimously on Dec. 22 to hire Zechman at a salary of $42,000 per year, he said.