I am the child of a police officer.
My father is an honor guard officer. That means when another officer dies he goes to the funeral service to honor their life and service. Every time I see this hat, I know there is yet another officer who fell in the line of duty.
Every time this hat is out it’s like a routine. It’s normal. But it still hurts. He takes his hat out, prepares his white gloves, gets a haircut, takes his uniform out and makes sure it is worthy to recognize another’s life.
His phone buzzes through the night making plans for the memorial service which they will be at. The pain he is feeling now for another officer could never be described in words. It is something much deeper.
While his family lays in bed praying that they will never have to be the ones who are having to prepare memorial for their dad, he sleeps to prepares for a day of heartache.
My father goes to places around the country to honor those who served. For those who we don’t always think about, for those who made the ultimate sacrifice to keep us safe, to keep us from having to worry. I know I can lay my head down knowing that because of them I will be ok.
It’s not only those who have fallen but those who live. Every day that an officer wakes up and puts their uniform on is another day. To you it might not seem like a big deal, but to me and those who wait for them to come home it feels like an eternity. We worry that maybe they won’t come home.
There are days when my dad comes home and he’s seen things that no one should ever have to see. The stories he tells us are often the funny ones, but that’s because he tries to shield us from the pain he sees out there. He knows it’s too much for any person to bear. He sees things that shouldn’t be in existence. Things that are too gory. Terrible things. Things that would tear us inside out if we knew. Yet he and all the other officers do. They do this to keep people they love and care about safe, they are willing to die for us.
So next time you see an officer let’s remember that they could be the next to fall. Remember that they have a family and friends who love them.
When I hear about an officer being killed, the claim that all officers are racist, officers are unjust, how we need to kill them… it makes me sad to know this is the world I live in. That this is the world my children will live in. If I want to see a change I need to be the change.
I want to thank the officers who have gone before us in the line of duty. I want to thank the officers who are still here fighting for our safety. I want to thank the families for the sacrifices they’ve made.