Arizona DPS director receives letter from his late dad from time capsule

Jul 4, 2019, 4:05 AM | Updated: 11:23 am
(AP Photo)...
(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — Arizona Department of Public Safety Director Col. Frank Milstead received a gift this week he never knew existed — a letter from his late father.

The letter came from a time capsule that was buried in 1988 when the DPS headquarters was built. The agency dug up the capsule for the department’s 50th anniversary, which fell on Monday.

Former DPS Director Ralph Milstead addressed the letter to whomever the current director would be, having no idea at the time that that person would be his son, who was appointed in 2015.

“As I am going through the contents of the box for the crowd, there’s a letter in there from the director from April of 1988, who was my father,” the current director told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Bruce St. James & Pamela Hughes Show on Wednesday.

“The first two words on the letter were ‘Dear director,’ and I broke down. It was just so incredibly emotional.”

Milstead said the original letter will be placed in the agency’s museum.

“He’s writing a letter to me and he doesn’t know it’s me,” Milstead said.

“And here I am because of Gov. (Doug) Ducey, to be in this position because of my 35 years in law enforcement, I’m the guy that’s opening the time capsule. It was unbelievable.”

The former director, who died in 1996, wrote about the April 4 impeachment of Arizona Gov. Evan Mecham, the same day the letter is dated.

Ralph Milstead also wrote about his warm feelings toward the future director.

“I know a little about you. I know you’re a good person, very successful and a leader. I know you head the finest law enforcement agency in Arizona and possibly the United States,” the letter read.

“I know DPS is in good hands. I know we could be friends.”

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Kathleen Patterson (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office and Facebook/Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Are...

Missing hiker found dead at Spur Cross Ranch in Cave Creek

A Valley woman who went missing over the weekend was found dead in the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area on Wednesday morning, authorities said.
12 hours ago
Republican U.S. senatorial candidate Blake Masters speaks at a campaign event in Phoenix on Aug. 1,...
Kevin Stone

Blake Masters thinks independents will back him over Sen. Mark Kelly

Blake Masters, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Arizona, said Wednesday he thinks the key independent bloc will support him in his effort to unseat Sen. Mark Kelly despite recent polling showing otherwise.
12 hours ago
(Pixabay Photo)...

Authorities investigate fatal boating accident on Colorado River in Arizona

Authorities are investigating the death of a California man in an apparent boating accident on the Colorado River in northwestern Arizona.
12 hours ago
FILE - Arizona Corporation Commission Chairman Bob Burns smiles during a meeting, Thursday, June 20...
Associated Press

High court says lone Arizona regulator can seek utility records

The Arizona commission that regulates utilities cannot prevent a single member from issuing subpoenas to investigate companies that the panel oversees, the state Supreme Court ruled Tuesday.
12 hours ago
(Apache Junction Police Department photo)...

Suspect in fatal shooting in Apache Junction turns himself over to police

A young man suspected of fatally shooting his brother in Apache Junction has turned himself over to authorities.
12 hours ago
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)...
Luke Forstner

Sheriffs suggest ways to tackle drugs and addiction in Arizona

With big fentanyl busts in the news and numbers up in Arizona, experts are talking about the best ways to address addiction.
12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
Arizona DPS director receives letter from his late dad from time capsule