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'I wouldn’t have done it any other way': Carrboro police Capt. Cornell Lamb retires

IMG_7004 Lamb FINAL.jpg

Photo courtesy of Chris Atack.

Throughout his whole life, Carrboro Police Department Capt. Cornell Lamb always wanted to help and protect people. After 22 years of service with the Carrboro Police Department, Lamb has retired and wants to continue to help people in a new environment. 

The desire to help and protect pushed Lamb to go into law enforcement. After over two decades of service, Lamb said he believes it was time to move on and open up the door to something new.

“There’s a time to move on and let someone else have the opportunity and advantages that I have had in Carrboro,” Lamb said. 

He is currently in the process of trying to work with the Wake County school system as a teacher assistant. In this position, Lamb said, he will still be able to help people.

“I see the need for minority males to be involved in schools,” he said.

He wants to be there as a male role model for students to look up to, talk to and receive guidance from. Lamb said his primary goal is to go into a school system where he can reach out and help students.

Before coming to Carrboro, Lamb worked for campus police at North Carolina Central University for three years. When he heard there was an open position in Carrboro, he decided to apply. He said he always wanted to be involved in law enforcement outside of campus police, so this seemed like a great opportunity to him.

When he first arrived, Lamb said the Carrboro Police Department seemed to be a good fit because it gave him the chance to do something he had wanted to do his whole life. 

“I wouldn’t have done it any other way," he said. "It wouldn’t be the same anywhere else.”

Lamb said he admires Carrboro's uniqueness, welcoming people, diversity and accepting environment. 

“It won’t be the same walking around Carrboro and not running into Captain Lamb," Carrboro Mayor Lydia Lavelle said in an email. "You could always find him out in the community at our town events. Although we will miss him, we wish him well.”

Lamb said he has countless memories with his fellow officers, staff, co-workers, administration and the town itself that he will cherish forever. He said he has had the opportunity to develop lasting friendships, work in a family-oriented environment and watch as the town has changed throughout the years. 

Chris Atack, a fellow captain with the Carrboro Police Department, spoke highly of Lamb.

“Captain Lamb was a great friend and co-worker for over 20 years. He coaches football at Chapel Hill High School and has mentored youth in the community,” Atack said. “His sense of humor, passion and willingness to go above and beyond to help the community demonstrates his heart and dedication to his profession. He will be hard to replace and we miss his experience and leadership.”

Lamb said he is grateful to have been able to partner with the Chapel Hill Police Department and University police through events such as Halloween, festivals and game days. He said he has enjoyed getting to know so many people and loved seeing different people come and go.

"I’m gone, but won’t be forgotten," Lamb said. "I won’t forget them and they won’t forget me.”

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