Area National Guard reservists keeping Super Bowl XLVI fans safe

2012-02-04T22:00:00Z 2012-02-07T16:40:13Z Area National Guard reservists keeping Super Bowl XLVI fans safeBy Al Hamnik, (219) 933-4154
February 04, 2012 10:00 pm  • 

INDIANAPOLIS | Hobart's Homer Farley and Munster's Paul Sabol aren't guys you'd want to mess with.

Both Indiana National Guard reservists are working for Eagle Trident Security at Pan Am Plaza downtown during Super Bowl XLVI week.

They are among 40 soldiers assigned to the StubHub venue where fans today will pick up game tickets they ordered online. The building itself houses a two-level ice rink. There will be a VIP party with food, drinks, live music and heavy foot traffic.

"It's so large, they needed security," Farley said. "They needed people familiar with crowd control. And in the main room (here), where tickets and stuff are stored, is millions of dollars.

"We're 24 hours (security) around the clock."

The orders given to Sgt. Farley and Sgt. 1st Class Sabol offer no wiggle room for the public.

"Zero tolerance," Farley said. "No pass, no entry."

Farley is a 1983 Wirt grad, Sabol a 1976 Munster alum. Both are with the Lafayette Armory and have worked the Gary Air Show, the Indianapolis Mini-Marathon, and the Mount Comfort Air Show among other large events.

"It's surreal and gives you goosebumps sometimes that you're in the middle of such a great event. Whoever thought something like this could come to Indiana?" Sabol said.

"Everybody (here) has been pretty nice," Farley said of crowds in general. "One night, they had a guy out here who talked to another one of the security companies and as he walked away, they saw shoes under a beer tent.

"The guy had stuck beer in some boxes. He had planned to steal the liquor and they caught him."

Crowd behavior has not been a problem despite unexpected street closings, massive traffic jams, and an estimated 400,000 people having toured downtown since last Friday.

"We are armed but (Eagle Trident) took armed and unarmed as well. I think a lot of it is just the presence of having security around," Farley said.

"There are so many guys who can 'neutralize' a situation."

Most of his co-workers are trained in the martial arts and present a strict air of authority without being overly-intimidating.

At $15 an hour, the hectic 10- and 12-hour work days don't seem as long.

"They got the Army involved because most of your police departments are on call now and are not allowed to do any security work," Sabol said.

"Our job is to just keep people safe." 

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