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Retired Chicago Cop A Full-Time Mentor To At-Risk Youths

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Brad Edwards Brad Edwards
Brad Edwards is a general assignment reporter for CBS 2 Chicago. He...
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(CBS) – Ever wonder what you’ll do in your retirement years? Maybe move to Florida, do a lot of golfing?

None of that’s in the cards for a retired Chicago cop who is spending his time on Chicago’s West Side in a crusade to help troubled kids before it’s too late.

CBS 2’s Brad Edwards reports.

“Our race is becoming extinct, and people are not even paying attention,” Marco Johnson says. “There’s no way we can continue to grow as a race if we’re killing each other.”

In retirement, the ex-cop has upped the ante by way of police athletic leagues. There was one in 2011; there are now four, with the recent addition of Al Raby High School.

Johnson uses sports as an in. He knows what an in can do.

“If not for the grace of God, there go me,” he says. “Somebody reached in to help me.”

Mentors pulled him from the grips of the Robert Taylor Homes. He evaded the pull of pushers and more to go to college and spend 28 years with the Chicago Police Department.

He’s paid if forward for decades, but now, in retirement, it’s full-time.

“We want every district in the city to have a police athletic league,” Johnson says. “It’s the mushroom effect.”

The president of the Fraternal Order of Police says Johnson is just another unsung hero of the department.

Right now, he has a couple-dozen officer volunteers and hopes for a couple hundred.

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