Many of us are counting our blessings this Thanksgiving and that's certainly true for Oklahoma City's police chaplain Greg Giltner.
After more than two decades on the job, he's ready to take on a new challenge – as a stay at home father to twin boys.
He and his wife Vonne adopted Cade and Colt back in December 2011.
The fraternal twin boys jumped into the hearts and lives of the Giltners, and never let go.
The couple not only made a place for them in their Goldsby home, but in their family too.
“They are absolutely a blessing to us,” said Greg Giltner, at their home on Thanksgiving morning. “And I just want to be a good dad to them.”
Giltner and his wife have 3 children of their own who are now adults.
He says he missed a lot of their childhood patrolling the streets,
and he does not want that to happen with the twins.
Both Giltner and his wife decided to become foster parents years ago,
and have had 17 children come into their lives.
And then they got a call to foster Cade and Colt - who were born premature and needed a good home.
“At 4 months old, they weighed 8 pounds, they were little, bitty guys,” said Giltner. “At that point we were hooked. I mean we were just hooked! We fell in love with them right away.”
They not only cared for them, but officially made them a part of their family - bringing this chaplain a new perspective on what's important in life.
So now, after years of helping other officers navigate the challenges of life, this chaplain says its time to say goodbye.
“Twenty-six years at the police department has been a lot of fun,” said Giltner. “I have no regrets at the police department, but it's time to spend time with family.”
Giltner became an Oklahoma City police officer in 1989.
For years, he patrolled the streets and helped train officers.
But for more than a decade, he has served as a chaplain for the FOP and then OKC.
In that time he has officiated 23 weddings.60 funerals, and provided countless hours of counseling for his fellow officers and their families.
He says his hardest assignments included helping those who lost homes and loved ones in last year's tornados, and officiating the funeral for the Starke family on the loss of their K9 Kaye in the line of duty.
He says helping the officers who have been in officer involved shootings is also tough. But he says through it all, he has kept things in perfect perspective.
God first, family second, job third.
And now Cade and Colt are going to make sure that family part is going to be extra exciting for the Giltners, and all who know and love them.
“I'm starting over with these little guys – It's just truly a blessing to have them,” said Giltner, with a smile on his face and tears of joy in his eyes.
The retirement party for the chaplain is set for January 15th.