A former soldier and a man following in his family’s footsteps are the two newest members of the Fountain Valley police force.
Officers Ryan Cea and Marcus Zappia took their oath of office at City Hall Tuesday afternoon, joining the ranks of the Fountain Valley Police Department.
Though the oath makes it official, Zappia, an Aliso Viejo Native, actually started a few weeks ago and Marcus, who grew up in Antelope Valley, will start sometime this week.
Both were hired from the Brea Police Department. Zappia was hired by Brea PD in November 2011 and Cea was hired in November 2010.
“Thank you for choosing Fountain Valley,” Mayor Pro Tem Mark McCurdy said to the officers during a brief welcome message. “It is all that you hear that it is.”
After FVPD Police Chief Dan Llorens administered the oath, Cea’s father pinned the badge on his son and Zappia’s mother pinned the badge on hers.
If you’d like to read the FVPD's oath of office, scroll to the end of the story.
Cea and Zappia’s addition to the force keeps the number of sworn officers at 58.
According to Llorens, the FVPD has had one recent retirement and another retirement coming up soon.
“Getting new officers that are going to take the place of officers that served faithfully is kind of a renewal for the organization,” said Dan Llorens, FVPD chief. “The fact that we're getting two experienced officers is a bonus. “
Zappia’s father is a patrol sergeant in Brea and his brother, Mike, is an Orange County Sheriff’s deputy.
Cea served in the Marine Corps from 2003 to 2010.
Zappia said that he feels he’s following in the footsteps of his father and brother.
"Ever since I was younger, growing up with my father in law enforcement, it’s something I’ve always wanted to do," Zappia said.
Cea said that the whole thing is exciting and that he’s happy that he has the opportunity.
Lloren’s advice to the new officers?
“Don’t mess it up,” he joked. In seriousness: “Serve with honor.”
According to Llorens, Cea spent his childhood and teen years in Antelope Valley. After graduating high school he joined the Marine Corps infantry in 2003. He reached the rank of sergeant by his fourth year and was discharged in 2010.
His personal decorations include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal and the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal. He is also a rifle and pistol expert.
At the Orange County Sheriff’s Academy, which he graduated from in May 2010, he received an A in each academic category and was named Top Marksman.
He served the Brea Police Department starting in November 2010 and is working towards his bachelor's degree in business management.
According to Llorens, Zappia was born and raised in Aliso Viejo, and attended Saddleback College. Zappia is currently working on a bachelor's degree in business management as well.
His father is a patrol sergeant at Brea police department, his brother is a deputy with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, and his stepmother is a district attorney investigator with Riverside County.
As a police cadet with Anaheim Police Department for two years, he was assigned to work the front counter, homicide detail and robbery detail and as a court liaison.
He attended Fullerton Police Academy and graduated fifth out of 51 recruits. He also received top recruit awards for shooting and field scenarios.
He was hired by the Brea Police Department in November 2011.
Fountain Valley Police Department Oath
I (state your name) do solemly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the state of California against all enemies foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the constitution of the state of California and the constitution of the United States of the America, and that I take this obligation freely. Without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion. That I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of police officer of the city of Fountain Valley, acting to the best of my ability so help me God.