The Death of a Child

A child’s death is never easy for the first responder, who has to experience it up close and personal. A friend at work related this personal and touching story about her experience at this type of call.

When she was sixteen, her 2-year old brother suddenly passed away. About eight years ago, this officer was working patrol and in her mid-thirties when she and a sergeant were dispatched to a call involving a dead child.

When she arrived on scene, she saw the child’s body in the bedroom and was instantly filled with the painful memory of her brother’s death all those years ago. The agonizing memory was made worse by the child’s family being there, which reminded her of how her mother had felt.

In that instant, the memory flashed into her head of performing CPR on her brother’s lifeless body as she tried to breathe life back into him. The memory of him lying in his coffin also flashed into her head like a bolt of lightning striking into her heart.

The officer had to get out of the house because she needed to separate herself from the situation. Distance was her friend and the only thing that was going to help her at this moment. Distance from the death, pain and grief that this house symbolized to her. She told the sergeant about her brother’s death and that she needed to be alone for a few minutes.

She quickly got out of the house and sat alone in her patrol car as she cried. She had no one to talk to at this painful and personal moment, which had just flooded back into her mind after seeing the dead child.

After a few minutes she composed herself and was ready to go back in. I asked her, “What did you do?” She replied, “I went back in. I had to handle the call.”

She went back into that house, which had been an emotional trigger and did what we’re supposed do. That was to be strong when others needed us to be.

All first responders have gone through similar emotions at one time or another while at work. Our job is not to stand by. Ours is to be strong, despite the tragedies we have experienced at work or in our personal lives.

This is what makes the first responders special. We are still doing the job that has to be done even though our emotions might be fighting an inner battle.

Stay safe

The Police Car

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The Police Car

The car is your traveling office. It’s a vehicle that is handed off from shift to shift with little or no rest, similar to the person who drives it. It’s worn and stained seats reflect what the driver has seen and been through with little or no support when they need it most.

The car is your shelter from the heat, rain, wind, cold and everything else mother nature wants to throw at you. The car can also be your happy place. The one place you can sit and just be alone. The car is your escape. The one place where no one can bother you for a needed break until the radio disrupts the silence.

The car is a place where life long bonds are formed with the partner who shares it with you.

It’s your way of escape from the last call, the last idiot, the last crash, the last tragedy or the last dead body.

The car is a friend that won’t betray you. It takes you to danger and it rescues you from it.

The police car is where you have to settle disputes over the phone between your kids or your spouse while you’re at work.

It is a symbol of trust and fear. Trust by those who need us. Fear by those who are doing something wrong. The car restores order at the sight of it as it rolls in hot to chaos. The car can save you, but it can kill you if you don’t respect its speed.

The black and white transports you to the dark side of humanity where the lowest scum live and prey. It takes you to the saddest stories and the worst things in the world. It takes you to places a normal person can’t imagine with the highest high and to the lowest of lows.

It’s part of an emotional roller coaster with twist and turns that very few will ever know because they are not part of this world.

The police car is the one symbol that brings smiles to the faces of children as we drive by. It doesn’t matter if the child is rich or poor, speaks English or not. They all joyfully yell out “Police” when they see it.

And finally and most importantly………..

The police car is driven by the Good Guys

The Badge

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What does “The Badge” mean?  What does it represent? The Badge means different things for many people. Sometimes it depends on your point of view.  I can’t speak for every law enforcement officer, but I can tell you what it means to me.

The Badge is the one symbol of trust and truth. Without trust and truth we have nothing. The Badge is the line in the sand between good and evil. It is the symbol of respect by some and hatred by others. It is a symbol of help and compassion, but also strength and firmness.  It is the symbol of courage and emotional baggage because the person who wears it sees the worst that man is capable of.

The Badge is the greatest responsibility bestowed upon a person because lives depend on it. Our society is based on laws and rules, which mankind is bound to break and not follow. The person who wears The Badge has been given the power, responsibility and the ability to protect the weak and innocent from the predators that prey on them.

The Badge is what holds society together and the person who wears it is the first line of defense.  I have the honor of wearing The Badge and I am proud to do so.