Military, EMT and officer all rolled into one dynamite package
Hometown Hero Sara Leger is the trifecta. Before age 30, she served in the military, became an emergency medical technician and then became a police officer.
After 9/11, the then-teenager felt a calling to serve our country. “It lit up a fire in me,” she revealed. So, at the tender age of 17, the Carencro native enlisted in the Army.
Not long after joining, she was deployed to Iraq, where she served for 18 months as a postal clerk. The young soldier’s duty: delivering mail to homesick troops.
“When you are overseas, the best thing is to get a package from home,” she shared. “It’s like you are giving a million dollars to someone. Getting a letter or package in the mail and having that connection with family and friends is everything.”
After completing her tour of duty in Iraq, Leger was assigned to Fort Benning, Georgia. There, she helped soldiers adjust to being back on U.S. soil after deployment. “When soldiers come home, they have to see financial adviser, mental health specialist and go through other stations,” she explained.
Leger returned home in 2011, remaining on reserve status until 2014. During the interim, she obtained her EMT certification at the National Emergency Services Academy in Carencro. But, for the driven soldier, that was not enough. In 2015, she went full-time as a policeman.
As a patrol officer, Leger serves in Precinct 4, which has the highest crime rate in Lafayette Parish. She covers everything from shootings to horrific auto crashes. But, the majority of calls involve domestic disputes.
“I can be a doctor one day, a lawyer one day, and a therapist the next,” she said. “Hands down, the number one thing I love about my job is helping people…whether they are giving me a hug or cussing me out.”
The modest officer admits to being caught doing a good deed by a passerby. While responding to a call from a citizen complaining about a youngster bouncing his basketball in the street, she decided to join him. A friend told her that someone had anonymously posted the touching moment on Facebook.
Though a tough police officer by day, Leger has a soft side. Her “baby” is three- year-old Boxer, Hudson. And, her “heart and soul” is her mom, Peggy Leger, to whom she sends a special shoutout: “I love you BATW (Big as the World)”