LUMBERTON — Sgt. Burnis L. Wilkins Jr. of the Lumberton Police Department was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine during a recent retirement ceremony in Lumberton.
Sen. Michael Walters presented the award, which is issued by Gov. Beverly Purdue and considered the highest honor a citizen can receive in the state. The award is given to individuals with a long-running record of service to North Carolina.
“It was a humbling experience for sure and I was quite excited to be recognized for my efforts to serve the public,” Wilkins said.
Wilkins, who retired with a total of 31 years in law enforcement, is a currently an EMT with the Lumberton Rescue Unit. He has served as a drug investigator at the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office, as the chief of detectives, and as an Alcohol Law Enforcement agent with the Department of Crime Control and Public Safety.
Wilkins completed the last two years of his career a special deputy U.S. marshal assigned to the Violent Fugitive Task Force in Fayetteville.
“I have enjoyed serving the citizens of this state and will continue to do my part in making this a safe city by providing care as a rescue unit member,” Wilkins said.
Not one to kick back and relax, he now serves as a Law Enforcement Training coordinator at Robeson Community College, where he taught for 26 years as a part-time instructor.