Wednesday, March 7, 2012

End of Watch

A silence fell across Brevard County, it spread across the country to reach as far as overseas. Cell phones rang, text messages chimed, and social media spread the news like wildfire as everyone panicked to find out if their loved one was okay. God called an angel home today.

A fellow deputy, veteran of 30 years in law enforcement, ran to the fight. She stood in the line of fire to protect and serve her community. Barb, I give my humble thanks to you for your service. You’re guidance and mentorship will be passed on to many future deputies. Your story will be retold a thousand times over of your heroism and sacrifice. There is no justice for the loss of a loved one. There are no words for the emotions those left behind will have to face. The one thing we all know is that God gave us a guardian angel today we will call by name. Deputy Sheriff Barbara Pill, end of watch March 6, 2012. God Bless.

Today, I had no words to give loved ones as the calls and messages poured in asking if I was okay other than ‘Yeah’. The comments left on my social media pages tugged at my heart as I saw the support from friends all over the world. The most surreal moment today was when my 13 year old son asked for me when I got home. He and I have a “butt heads and never see eye-to-eye” relationship.

I walked in his room where he was already tucked in bed. He looked at me and asked, “Was she a friend?” I replied, “Yeah. She was an awesome friend.” He sat up with open arms and gave me a big hug. I promised him I would be an old woman before I die and that I would be around a long time to stay on his butt about everything. Then he squeezed me a little tighter and said, “I love you, mom.” That moment made me realize the difference I make. My husband and boys are my strength, and my greatest weakness. I thank God for them.
****

For those who get upset with law enforcement when you get pulled over, they show up at your door because your neighbor complained about you, or you see cops sitting at a coffee shop and think of the stereotype, think about this:

On a daily basis we get called to the interstate for a reckless driver that turns into a deadly traffic crash; to an area where there was a 9-1-1 hangup with no other information only to find it was a wanted felon waiting to ambush us; to a domestic violence call where a kid beat up mom or mom beat a kid, where a guy beat his girlfriend to death in front of her kids; we get called to the scene where a child was sexually abused by a relative, then the next call is in a suburb where there’s a noise complaint from a neighbor. On a daily basis we arrive on scene with limited information and are expected to solve the publics’ problems in minutes that took them years to create.

On a daily basis we face the unknown dangers of a traffic stop, a 9-1-1 hangup, a fight in progress, a robbery or burglary, or a person with mental issues who went off their meds and isn’t law enforcement friendly. On a daily basis we go hours if not a full shift without eating or being able to stop and use a bathroom. We endure public ridicule at the cost of protecting their freedom of speech.  On a daily basis we are moving targets for the bad guys who hunt us just as we hunt them.

Now think about this: At the end of shift, by the grace of God and our training, we go home. We sit down with loved ones who ask, “How was your day?” You don't tell them the bad.  My reply, “Another busy day. How was yours?”

I ask only this of my friends and family, of my readers, of my critics: Think of your worst fear, multiply it by infinity, and look over your shoulder as you run away. You’ll see us running to face what you fear. It’s not about what we do, it’s about what we’re willing to do.  Today, Barb reminded us of that. 




http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120306/NEWS01/120306010/Veteran-Brevard-deputy-killed-Melbourne-fleeing-suspects-detained?odyssey=nav%7Chead

10 comments:

Judith said...

Wonderfully written. Thank you for pointing out what law enforcement has to deal with and the many things us civilians often don't see or sometimes forget about. It takes a dedicated individual to serve the public and deal with the scum on this earth. To risk you life daily, despite the many financial cuts and the low pay. Even though I too have been guilty of complaining about "cops", you have pointed out very important facts that have reminded me of how I become upset over silly things when all law enforcement does is to respond to a call. Thanks for sharing and allowing me to reflect to ensure I don't forget what important and tough jobs you have.

Anonymous said...

AMEN Very Well Written I SAY and Point out these things all the TIME! I Think it is Very Important to shed light on How amazing Police are in what they endure from day to day istead of all of the negative coverage they constantly get. To the Men and Women of Law Enforcement could be thanked each day on every hour and it would NOT be enough thanks for what you do! THanks Again, GOD BLESS!

Anonymous said...

This is one of the most wonderful things I have read! This was moving, emotional, and sincere! Thank you for sharing this with everyone! She is one of the heroes among many who sacrificed her time with her family to serve the country she loved! She will forever be in my families prayers and will always be remembered!

Redneckgirl said...

Thank you for reminding us what you go through each and every day. This was very well written, and a great reminder for eveyone who may dismiss the responsibility that comes with being a public servant!

Kirk D. said...

I know that in my younger days I would look down my nose at police officers with the notion that all that ever wanted to do was give me a speeding ticket or such. As I have grown older I have learned to appreciate them. I even had a great friend who was a Sterling Heights Micchigan Detective. We lost him some years back. I thank God that we have dedicated law enforcement professionals such as Deputy Sheriff Barbara Pill. She made the ultimate sacrifice for her community and it does not go unnoticed. May God, her friends and fellow officers help to comfort one another in this time of grief and loss.

Anonymous said...

This is great and so true! My hearts go out to the entire family of this woman, from her immediate family to her police family! What is this world coming to??? Thanks heavens there are people like her and the many other police officers that put their life on the line everyday to try to protects us when in turn the crimminal justice system sometimes turns around and supports and protects the crimminal in many cases! God I wish they would have killed both of those losers!!!! Eye for an eye!!! (And to think her mother (the idiot that was with the shooter) defended her in the paper the other day, and worse yet Florida Today printed it!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Well done and well said. Thank you all LEOs ... for you.
Joseph, Former LEO/Colorado

connie said...

Wow this brought tears to my eyes... I never understood why so many people would cross the line to hurt a person in law enforcement when they are only their to protect us all... I know personally I would not be able to do their job... May God be with each and every person that goes to battle for us everyday...

Anonymous said...

The question is asked all the time of firefighters, "Why do you run into a burning building when everyone else is running out?" Not to minify any moment of a firefighters job, but at least they have some idea of the enemy they face. I ask the same thing of police officers. Why would you run into a situation that everyone else is running away from? Most of the time the answer will come back that it is part of the job. I salute all who are willing to face my enemy so I don't have to. Thank you.

Karen D said...

This was so beautifully written, and so on point. So sorry for your personal loss, her loved ones, and for all us she swore to serve and protect..