GIRARD — Crawford County’s new sheriff, Danny Smith, was sworn in during a ceremony Friday at the county courthouse in Girard by Judge Honorable Kurtis Loy.

Following his own swearing in, Smith led the swearing in of the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office’s deputies.

Smith began his comments by thanking the audience and noted that it included his family members who came from Kansas City to attend the ceremony.

“I’ve got two families here today,” Smith said. “I spent half my life working for this county and with a lot of you folks. I’ve probably spent more time with you guys than I have a lot of my own family.”

Smith has been with the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office for 24 years. He began his career as a Communications Officer in the department’s 911 center before working his way up through the ranks of Deputy Sheriff, Lieutenant and Captain.

Smith said it was humbling and an honor to be promoted to sheriff.

“I look forward to the challenges that await,” he added, before thanking audience members again for their support.

Smith was elected sheriff late last month following the retirement of Sheriff Dan Peak, who spent 30 years with the Crawford County Sheriff’s Office. He served as undersheriff for Eugene “Sandy” Horton before being elected Sheriff in 2012. Undersheriff Steve Geier, who will follow Peak into retirement, has been with the department for 33 years.

Peak attended and spoke at the April 5 swearing in ceremony, and presented Smith with his old sheriff’s badge.

“I know you’ve got a new shiny one coming up, but this is the one that I’ve been proud to carry as Sheriff of Crawford County, and it was passed down to me by Sheriff Horton from his swearing in back in 1994, so we’re working on 25 years on this old badge here,” Peak said.

“But you know it’s symbolic of a couple things. It might not have the luster that it had, but it’s symbolic of the pride that I know Sandy and I had wearing it, and it also is symbolic of the fact that the badge doesn’t make the sheriff. The person makes the sheriff, and I’m really proud to be able to pin this on Danny’s shirt today.”