Filling the Void

TIM ZDANSKI passed away all too soon this summer. The former Bethesda police chief and civic leader left a legacy second to none in all walks of life.

One of his pet projects was The Belmont County Drug Task Force. The task force has done much good in cleaning up the county from drug activity. Zdanksi’s passing left a major void with the group.

The drug task force is a much-needed commodity. It has produced a positive impact locally.

While Zdanski may have been peerless, the drug task force has a new leader, and one we feel will follow Zdanksi’s footsteps seamlessly and very effectively.

Martins Ferry Police Chief John McFarland has accepted the post of commander for the task force. We view McFarland as the ideal law enforcement officer to handle the challenging post.

He is hitting the ground running, ushering in some new ideas. His immediate priorities will be expanding the program’s resources and streamlining its efficiency. He also says, “My ultimate goal is to get as much funding as I can for this task force.”

The task force receives its funding derived from a grant and any seized assets resulting from arrests.

McFarland is hoping to find new headquarters for the unit as well as working with departments to better allow task force officers to handle drug cases. The seven officers who compose the task force are from departments across the county.

We support all the plans McFarland is proposing. It is a reflection of not being content with a good thing.

McFarland took over the police chief duties in Martins Ferry during most turbulent times. He has calmed the ship and has his force operating at a level of excellence.

We believe he will do the same in his new challenge.