U.S. Marshal finishes True Grit event in Carson City
The Carson City Arts and Culture Commission completed its month-long True Grit event with a presentation from a true American.
Nearly two dozen people attended the final event, which consisted of a screening of the 2010 film “True Grit” and a speech from a modern marshal.
Christopher Hoye shared his experiences with the audience about being a U.S. Marshal and how he got into his career.
“The thing that is interesting about the marshals is that there is a direct line between when they started in 1789 to 2018,” Hoye said. “At my office we have the photos of every single marshal from 1785 on the wall,” Hoye said. “We can trace our roots to Wyatt Earp.”
Back in the Wild West days, the marshal was sent across the country by the president to make a difference.
“All the direction they got was to maintain order in the old times,” Hoye said. “And they deputized men along the way and they became our sheriffs… but the president sent one person into the world to try and make a difference.”
Hoye, a native Nevadan, talked about how growing up in his community helped shape him into the person he is.
“I am one of your kids, I am Nevada born and I was raised here,” Hoye said.
He talked about how he agreed to come to Carson when Arts and Culture Coordinator Mark Salinas told him they would be visiting the Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Nevada to speak for one of the events.
“When he mentioned the Boys and Girls Club, it caught my attention, and then he mentioned Carson City, it was in because it’s my home,” Hoye said. “So it is my honor to be here.”
One of the stories Hoye shared was growing up as a kid and his first run-in with law enforcement. He talked about how his friend Fat Clyde convinced him to steal a candy bar from the local 7-11 and that’s when he came into contact with the infamous officer Eddie Landino, a.k.a. the toughest cop in the west side.
He said the officer gave him two choices for trying to steal the candy bar: to go to juvenile detention or for him to take Hoye home.
“I just turned around and put my hands behind by back and said sir just take me to jail,” Hoye laughed.
And after a spanking from his mom he would never forget, Hoye decided to retire from his life of crime.
He started his law enforcement career with the Las Vegas Police Department and on his first day in the field training program he ran into officer Landino again and stayed in contact with him and his widow to this day. Hoye said he told that story to illustrate that sometimes everyday people are heroes, too.
“I don’t know if I am a hero, there are things I can’t do like write or draw or do anything creative,” Hoye said.
But he talked about the three things that he did have, that he learned growing up going to the Boys and Girls Club.
“(One of the volunteers) told me I have three qualities to hold onto, you’re kind and compassionate and you’re a protector,” Hoye said.
He was in law enforcement for two decades before retiring as a lieutenant. He then started as a U.S. Marshal after being appointed by President Barack Obama. He talked about how he has brought down cartels and negotiated talks in the Middle East and talked to Congress.
“You’re kid did that,” Hoye said.
Mayor Bob Crowell also provided Hoye with a proclamation from the city for the NEA Big Read event.
“On behalf of a grateful community, we are proud to have you here and thank you for your service to Nevada,” Crowell said. “It is great to have law enforcement involved with the arts and culture in the community.”
Crowell also praised Salinas for his work with the grant.
“Arts and Culture in Carson City has taken a large leap forward under you,” Crowell said.
The Carson City Arts and Culture Commission hosted the True Grit event thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts Big Read program. This grant, awarded to only 75 cities around the country, required a community to pick out a novel and create 30 days worth of activities and education for its residents around that book. Carson City was the first Nevada community to receive this grant for the first time in eight years.
Salinas said he chose Charles Portis’s 1968 novel “True Grit” because it represented Nevada’s Wild West heritage perfectly.
“I was a city slicker and I thought what better way to acclimate myself than to dive into the Wild West with this,” Salinas said.
Dozens of Carson City businesses and organizations came together to create to make the events possible.
“It was important for me to use our resources and our partners were fantastic,” Salinas said.
Salinas told stories from the past month, including when they had to shoot the video for the events. He said he had to attempt to make grits for the first time with Fire Chief Sean Slamon on camera.
“I don’t know if anyone has tried to make grits in an unfamiliar kitchen with two live cameras in your face and a bunch of hungry firefighters… now that is true grit,” Salinas joked.
Crowell also thanked those who participated throughout the month.
“Carson City is a great place to live and when you go to sleep and think of what you have done for humanity, you can say you did your part today to promote arts and culture in our community,” Crowell said.