Deputy Sheriff Greg Kastor is now on patrol in Dowling Park. The grandson of Eula Setzer, one of the first five orphans to move to Advent Christian Village in 1913, Dep. Kastor says working here feels like coming home.
Dep. Kastor grew up just down the road in Suwannee County — the son of Wilbur and Geneva Kastor — and graduated from Suwannee High School. Immediately after high school, he enlisted in the US Navy and served for four years. One of those years, he served on shore patrol in Iceland. This was Dep. Kastor’s first taste of law enforcement.
After being honorably discharged from the Navy, Dep. Kastor moved back to Suwannee County and took a job with the Florida Department of Corrections. Six months later, he took a job with the Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement and operated an inspection station for four years. Dep. Kastor calls each of these jobs stepping stones.
Dep. Kastor’s next step was to become an officer with the Live Oak Police Department — a job he held for a number of years before becoming a Deputy with the Suwannee County Sheriff’s Office. He worked as a Deputy Sheriff until his retirement in 2007.
In his retirement, Dep. Kastor says he and his wife, Kilinda, traveled some, and worked around the house. But Dep. Kastor became restless and decided to go back to work. In 2010, he took a job with the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, and he and Kilinda moved to Florida’s westernmost county. He was working there when ACV’s former deputy, David Poole, called to ask if he would be interested in succeeding him as Advent Christian Village’s Deputy. Dep. Poole planned to retired at the end of 2016 and was looking for a replacement. Dep. Kastor thought the job sounded perfect.
Days after getting the ball rolling for what should have been a three-month transition, Dep. Poole was injured at the end of September while riding his horse and was unable to return to active duty to finish out the year. The call was made to ask Dep. Kastor to come early, and two weeks later, the Kastors were “back home” in Suwannee County.
The move was so sudden, says Dep. Kastor, his uniforms had not yet arrived, and he worked his first three weeks in Dowling Park wearing jeans and a star clipped to his hip.
“Working here is a blessing,” Dep. Kastor says. “I couldn’t ask for a better place to work. Everyone keeps thanking me and waving. My arm is worn out from waving,” he smiles.
When asked about filling Dep. Poole’s shoes, Dep. Kastor responds, “I will do whatever I can to maintain quality of life and safety.” Dowling Park was blessed by the service of Dep. Poole for 11 years.
Greg and Kilinda Kastor have two grown children. Their son, Brandon, is an officer with the Live Oak Police Department. Their daughter, Jessica, is married to the grandson of Fred Mickler, Advent Christian Village member and former Jasper, Florida, physician. Brandon and Jessica each have one child.