Sound is composed of the vibrations that travel through the air and can be heard by the human ear. There are sounds all around us, some familiar and some foreign. The sounds of the police siren bring about many visions in our thoughts and minds. We immediately see the blue and red lights, the uniform worn so proudly, and the image of the badge shining brightly on the chest of every hero, of every law enforcement officer.
Countless police families hear the sounds of the Velcro, the buckling of the gun belt, the radio faded in the background, and the car driving away as if to get further and further till you hear nothing. There is the sound of the wind that runs through fingers of the countless families who wave good-bye, clinging to the hope of a safe return and those who never knew it was their final wave. The children of our law enforcement who chase after their parent’s patrol car, who wave in excitement, and who scream at the arrival of their mommy or daddy as they pull up in the driveway or walk through the front door.
While many of us hear these sweet sounds and have made them a part of our everyday life, there are those precious families who have said a heroic good-bye and those sweet sounds are but a memory.
For these families the sounds that once were have now echoed in their hearts forever. Those familiar sounds of working police officers were replaced with taps and bag pipes. Gun shots go off in a respectful salute and the sound of a fallen officer’s last call and retiring of the badge is maximized as the e-tone rings loud in their ears and in the hearts of those left standing.
As the sounds of the heroes forever remain in the hearts of those who cherished them, so will their memory be like a vibration that travels through hearts and memories in those who have gone before and those who follow behind them.
This is for the wife on duty who gazes at the empty chair at the dinner table. The empty space in her bed that remains untouched, the pressed uniform that will never be worn again, longing in her heart to hear his sweet voice say, “I love you.” Many women may be as good as gold, but you sweet sisters surpass them all. The love of your life will never be forgotten, it is through you his memory will live on.
This is for the husband on duty who yearns for his sweet angel. The gentleness of her touch is something he will never forget. There are times he can still smell her sweet perfume and swear that he feels her light touch in an empty room. He will miss the sunshine she brought into the smallest things and how she could brighten up any room or situation with her sweet smile.
This is for the kid on duty who now has countless officers who have stepped up to be the father or mother to them. While your mommy or daddy may not be at your games, recitals, birthdays, and countless precious moments, their presence will be alive in you. It was your mommy or daddy who molded you and shined bright so you can shine bright. Remember, your mommy or daddy is beyond the definition of a superhero. While they may have not have worn a cape, they wore a badge, and it shined well.
This is for the families on duty who ache for their beloved officer. While he or she made the room a little brighter and brought life to any party, their memory will once again bring laughter and joy to any family gathering. Many heads may be filled at the table and at special occasions, but in the midst of all the family members, their sweet voice will say, “I’m here, look around you.”
This is for the officer on duty who lost their friend, brother, sister, their backup. While you may not hear their name in roll call, their name will forever be sketched on monuments and hearts and remembered with honor. They are the angels that now go before you and continue to be your backup.
Our lives are filled with many fond sounds, our senses. People we were once able to see, touch, hear, feel, and a few shared the taste of a precious kiss, are now the sound of sweet silence. As we remember our fallen on this emphasized week to honor our heroes and heroes behind the heroes , we will remember it when we hear the many sounds of a hero.
These sounds can be found in the passing of sirens while an officer is running code, the radios filled with codes and directions given from dispatchers, the sound of keys banging against the gun belt as an officer runs in pursuit, and in the loud silence of many raising a candle over their heads while the strong blue light penetrates the sky for all to remember those left behind.
These lights and blue line will be a symbol of those who fought till the end and those who remain standing serving and protecting. So, when you hear the sound of a hero all around you in your city, don’t forget that these sounds represent sacrifice, courage, and a sign that there are families hoping and praying for their safe return.
Allison P. Uribe is an auxiliary chaplain with the San Antonio Police Department. Allison’s husband is a San Antonio police officer. She is also a chaplain with Serve and Protect, serving the spiritual and emotional needs of law enforcement, fire/ rescue, and corrections; www.serveprotect.org or 625-373-8000. Allison is the founder of Wives on Duty Ministries designed to support and encourage wives of law enforcement and other emergency services through the word of God. Allison will launch Kids on Duty – To Play and Pray in Summer 2013. For more information visit www.wivesonduty.com or email Allison at [email protected] She is also the lead community chaplain and student with Global University Berean School of the Bible and speaks at many Law Enforcement events. Allison wrote “Because I’m Suitable-The Journey of A Wife on Duty”, geared toward wives of law enforcement; http://www.amazon.com/Because-Im-Suitable-Journey-Wife/dp/1449740839