Pc Rick Revitt, a response officer for South Yorkshire Police known to many on Twitter as 'The Moustache Cop', tweeted a video of the moment he fought back the tears as he went "status 11", or "off duty", for the last time as he takes retirement.
The long-serving officer has been in the police for nearly 25 years and had an illustrious 20 year career with South Yorkshire Police, with achievements including the arrest of Rotherham serial 'shoe fetish' rapist James Lloyd in 2006.
Pc Revitt, 50, has also previously been a covert officer in the force's Major Investigations Team, set up the operation to catch the killer of Thomas Gower who was killed in a one-punch attack in Sheffield in 2010 and has more recently worked to raise awareness of domestic violence.
In 2010, Pc Revitt was involved in a motorbike crash on the M1 while working covertly on duty.
He told how emergency services were called to the scene prepared for a fatal collision and had to use defibrillators to bring him back.
"They say cops witness between 3-400 major traumatic incidents in their career, as opposed to the average of one or two for the average person," he said.
The sprightly officer was back at work six months after the horrific crash.
But it was with a heavy heart he signed off full-time duties this week, and he described his last duty sign-off as "horrific".
"I found it really, really sad," he told The Yorkshire Post.
"I love this job and I would do every single day again if I could."
Detective Superintendent Una Jennings, who is South Yorkshire Police's Head of Crime, described Pc Revitt as "one of the absolute best cops I have ever, ever met in my life".
"I cannot tell you how much I have learned from you and the support you have been to me," she tweeted him in response.
A former member of the military, Pc Revitt is retiring from full-time frontline duties to take his military pension, but plans to return part-time to train recruits and pass on the torch.
"I learned so many things in my career," he continued.
"The biggest weapon I've found you can have is your mouth – it's important to use it. So many times in this job you experience people being confrontational and ready to charge. But I've found there's usually a way you can talk things through.
"In all my years of service, I'm very lucky that I've never been badly hurt in an assault. And I've been in some pretty dangerous situations. Assaults of police officers are going through the roof at the moment."
Pc Revitt will return later this month to do part-time training of newly-recruited police officers.