DUE WEST, S.C. (WSPA) – It turns out you can go home again.
At least if you’re Abbeville County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Levi Bell. He’s the school resource officer at Dixie High School after graduating from the school in 2015.
“There is something special about Dixie High School,” Bell said, who moved to Due West in time to start his sophomore year.
“I found my lunch group. That was my major friend group was out here (in the courtyard) eating lunch. (That) would set me up to be the student body president.”
Bell was student body president at Dixie High School his senior year while also playing on the football team. He later graduated from Bob Jones University and joined the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office.
However, home came calling and Bell joined the Abbeville County Sheriff’s Office. He’s been the SRO at his former high school for a year and a half.
“It felt kind of weird to have a sidearm on my hip and just walking through hallways without a teacher say something about being out of class,” Bell told us with a smile.
Bell is one of 15 Dixie High School graduates who now are members of the faculty or staff.
“He was one of the first students to walk around with a laptop, before all the students had laptops,” according to Machelle Gray, who was Bell’s English teacher.
“He was the ‘go to man’ if you needed information about anything. He would gladly look it up for you.”
Bell is still building relationships today. “It’s all about hearts and minds,” he said frequently. “Getting the student to get used to law enforcement.”
He’s certainly used to Dixie High School.
“Maybe it’s just the location of it, out here in the middle of nowhere in Due West. It’s just a special kind of people here. Everybody’s friendly. Everybody’s nice to each other.”
“I can retire here,” Bell said. “That’s how great this school is.”