By Adam Armour/The Itawamba County Times
FULTON – When Will Nabors aims for something, he hits it. And he always wanted to be a police officer.
“As a kid, I always looked at police officers as heroes,” the Fulton resident said. “It’s just been a passion of mine since I was a kid. It’s something I always wanted to do.”
Nabors recently graduated from the North Mississippi Law Enforcement Training Academy, a 10-week course required of all potential officers of the law. Nabors currently works as a police officer stationed at the Itawamba Community College campus in Tupelo.
While at the academy, he earned the highest of honors: the best-of-class Top Cop award.
Nabors also graduated with the Top Shot award for being the best in his class shooting with 100 percent accuracy on the firing range.
Once again, it was something he was aiming for.
“That was my No. 1 personal goal when joining the academy: To be the best in my class at firearms,” he said.
He said he’s always enjoyed shooting, finding the hobby to be a good way to clear his mind and relax. When you’re focused on the shot, he said, the surrounding world just disappears.
“I’ve always been a pretty good shot,” Nabors continued. “I was raised around guns, and I’ve been shooting them since I was young. It’s always been one of my favorite pastimes.”
Growing up, Nabors used to shoot at targets with his friends two or three times a week.
“We’d just get out and go behind the house and shoot,” he said. “I’ve just done it long enough now that it’s just kind of a natural feel.”
Of course, the police academy isn’t quite as relaxing as shooting targets in the back yard. The days were long, rigorous and exhausting, he said.
“It’s basically military boot camp,” he said. “Everything has to be in order on a strict time schedule. You have a certain time to do everything.”
As far as firearms training goes, Nabors said students were tested on the use of both handguns and shotguns from a variety of different ranges. They were tested on details both overtly significant – such as where on the target to aim the weapon – to the seemingly superficial – such as how to properly hold the trigger.
“They covered everything,” Nabors said, admitting that, although grueling, the academy was enjoyable … once.
“It was a life experience,” he said. “But I wouldn’t want to go back. I enjoyed it, but I’m glad to be back home.”
Now, it’s time to think about the future at ICC and beyond.
“I like patrolling, getting out and talking to people,” he said.
Fortunately, there’s not a lot of use for his firearm skills, but that’s fine. That doesn’t mean he’s going to let them go to waste. Nabors said he’ll return to the academy in the fall to become a certified firearms instructor.
Later, he plans to get his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.
He’ll do it, too. After all, Nabors never misses his target.