HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — An Horry County police officer immigrated to the United States 15 years ago and is now working to bridge the communication gap in Horry County’s Hispanic community.
At 23 years old, Samantha Cassady left her hometown of Tampico, Mexico to study in America. Teaching herself English wasn’t an easy task.
“When I really kind of got more into it was when I got pregnant,” Cassady said. “Every single information was in English.”
She worked to gain citizenship and support her daughter as a single mother. In 2015, Cassady landed a job as a bilingual receptionist for Horry County P.D.
“Getting to know the job and being the front desk answering phones, sometimes helping and assisting officers,” she said. “We need a translator, can you help us out?”
The department soon needed more officers and she was quickly considered. Cassady and her daughter moved to Columbia for training at the academy.
“I was learning everything in a language that I was just still learning,” she said. “Every single test. Every single terminology.”
And she passed. Now Cassady spends most of her time patrolling the streets of Horry County. Using her bilingual skills to bridge a gap in the Hispanic community.
“It is a great feeling being able to break that language barrier between a problem and a big solution,” she said.
And keeping her heritage alive at home.
Watch the News13 Hispanic Heritage special Saturday at noon.