red bank joey fields mike clay Following department custom, colleagues honored two retiring Red Bank police officers with a “walkout” after their final day of work Friday.

Detective Joey Fields, above left, let out a facetious yell of “free at last” as he and Captain Mike Clay stepped out of the police station on Monmouth Street to find themselves encircled by fellow law enforcement personnel, volunteer firefighters and borough employees.

After a group photo, many of the celebrants walked a block east to the Dublin House Pub for a celebration.

Clay, the department’s second in command, has been on the squad since 1986; borough native Fields, a sergeant, joined the force in 1991.

Among those present was former deputy police chief and former public works director Gary Watson, who traveled from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, for the event.

Watson told redbankgreen that as a boy, Fields approached him about “getting him a job” with the police.

“I walked him in,” Watson said, “so I had to be here to walk him out.”

(Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)