Miami Police Major bids farewell before leaving to Ferguson

MIAMI (WSVN) — Former Miami Police Major Delrish Moss is bidding farewell, Tuesday, on the day before he leaves to Ferguson, Missouri, to be sworn in as their next top cop.

On his final day at the Miami Police Department, he said his goodbyes with only fond memories of the invaluable lessons he gained over the years, as he grew up within the ranks of the department. "It’s taught me the value of people and friendships and connections."

Moss joined the department in 1984 and rose through the ranks to become major.

He specifically recalled the day a woman called him to the police department lobby. "She shows me this little boy, she says his name is Delrish," he said.

It turned out he was the son of a woman this Delrish had once arrested. He said she told him, "You also did a lot of follow up to help me out. You saved my life, so when I had my first born child, I named him after you."

Moss is taking his memories and years of experience to move on to become the Chief of the Ferguson Police Department.

Moss is taking the lead at a difficult time, just two years after a deadly confrontation between a white officer and an unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, in Ferguson led to months of protests and unrest in Ferguson. The city’s police chief stepped down last year amid the turmoil. People rallied in the streets when the previous chief stepped down.

However, Moss said, he’s ready for the challenge after working as a policeman in Miami since the ’80s, including during the city’s race riots. "Having worked as a policeman during civil unrest gives me a perspective probably not many other people have," said Moss.

While Ferguson is his next stop, Major Moss said Miami will always be home. "Thank you to everyone who has had, in some small way, an impact on my life," he said. "Everything that I am, it is because of you …"

Moss is moving to Ferguson, Missouri next week, and will be officially sworn in as their Chief of Police on May 9.