The legacy of a former Gainesville police officer, who died while on duty, will continue on thanks to a scholarship established by his family.
The Steven Fleming Memorial Scholarship was recently established at North Central Texas College to honor the former City of Gainesville police chief who died in 2013.
The $1,000 scholarship will go to a student majoring in Criminal Justice with preference given to applicants from Cooke County.
Fleming’s wife, Kim, says a scholarship in his name is one way to make some good come out of an otherwise tragic event.
“Even from the time that we were in the hospital, we discussed with the police that we wanted to set up something to honor Steven’s memory,” she said. “Since he was one that was always wanting to help others, what better way to help other people than to give back. I just think he would have loved that idea because that’s what he was about – helping people. It also helps us in our healing that we can be a part and give back to our community, which he loved and we love.”
Fleming served the Gainesville Police department for 22 years. He started his career as a police officer in 1991, then six years later he advanced to Corporal. A year later he earned the rank of Sergeant and then Captain in 2003. It was in 2008 that he was promoted to Chief.
Jack Jones is the Vice-President of the Gainesville Police Association. He says a scholarship is the perfect way to honor his former Chief.
“The Chief was always pushing his people to better themselves, get a better education, never give up and continue to reach for your goals,” Jones said. “He always had an interest in local young men and young women staying focused and rising to the top. He was a very big advocate of people getting their education.
“With us working with the Chief and hearing how he talked to students and to his patrol officers and encouraging them to go back and get their education, what better way than to take our local hometown kids, make them smart and put them back into this community as our future leaders.”
Jones says the goal is to endow the scholarship so it will continue to help students for years to come.
Donations to the Steven Fleming Memorial Scholarship can be made at any First State Bank location or at the city’s public safety facility, which has been renamed the Steven K. Fleming Public Safety Center.
For more information about the Steven Fleming Memorial Scholarship, or other scholarships available at NCTC, contact NCTC Vice-President for Institutional Advancement Debbie Sharp at 940-668-4213 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The family of former Gainesville Police Chief Steven Fleming recently established a scholarship in his honor at NCTC. His wife and daughter made the presentation to NCTC President Dr. Eddie Hadlock and Vice-President of Institutional Advancement Debbie Sharp. Pictured are (left to right) Sharp, Dr. Hadlock, Fleming’s wife Kim and daughter Maegan.