Danville, VA - The Danville Sheriff's Office is very, very strong. This past weekend, two deputies won first place national titles for bench pressing. But those are not the only two with power lifting titles.
Four deputies there hold national or even world records. The Sheriff is impressed at how his officers have turned a hobby into a strength for the department.
"I still hold the record which I'm proud of but it's time for somebody to break it at this stage of the game," said Sheriff Mike Mondul.
Nearly two decades ago, Mike Mondul set the bar high for law enforcement by setting a record. He lifted 440 pounds at the Academy bench press competition. Mondul has carried the title throughout his career and now as Sheriff, he is ready to pass it on.
"It would be nice if somebody from our office could do it," said Mondul.
But Danville Deputies have paved their own power lifting careers.
"It's important to have everybody motivate one another. It keeps me strong," said Major Matthew Wyatt, Danville Sheriff's Department.
Major Matthew Wyatt and Deputy Shawn James competed in the national Iron Boy Power-lifting competition, each taking home first place titles and beating state records.
"I think it means that we take physical fitness seriously and this line of work I think you need to take it seriously because you never know what element you are going to run across," said Wyatt.
Deputy Bob Thomas holds two world records in shoulder press and bench press competitions.
"You're looking at a department of 80 something deputies and now you are looking at what, 4 champions? You're looking at a whole lot of power in a smaller department," said Deputy Bob Thomas, Danville Sheriff's Department.
They say becoming a role model motivates them. And it helps with the job.
"It also make a criminal element think twice about trying you," said Wyatt.