At first it seemed rather unreal, like I had somehow managed to teleport myself back to Stockton, California where I first became a dispatcher and officer involved shootings were - sadly - quite common but the world has become a different place and things like school shootings, mall shootings, and officer-involved shootings can obviously happen anywhere. There's no such thing as "it'll never happen here" anymore as unfortunately it does and does so more frequently these days.
|Photo Credit: Groton Police via Facebook|
No doubt, Jonathan is still all of those things and more - still a member of the Coast Guard Reserve, still someone with a great sense of humor, and still a darned good cop while also taking on the role of father to a son who no doubt idolizes him and who's going to wonder why daddy hasn't come home from work this evening and why somebody would want to hurt him.
Since I heard the news and found out who the officer was that had been shot, I have been hoping and praying that Jonathan will recover fully from his injuries; I've been hoping and praying for all of the men and women at Norwich Police - those I know and those I never met; and I have been hoping and praying that those who were sitting on the other side of the radio and heard those horrible words that we as dispatchers never ever want to hear are holding up okay. People always seem to think that this sort of stuff doesn't really affect the dispatchers like it does the field officers but I can guarantee you that it does - more than you will ever know.
Finally, I am hoping and praying that the world somehow manages to stop the downhill slide that it's on as this is not the legacy that we want to be leaving our children and grandchildren. And it's not just about gun control, it's about people who are mentally ill getting the help that they need - help that works and doesn't just put a band-aid on a serious injury.
God be with you, Monkey, as he watches over you, heals your wounds, and brings you home to the family that loves you. I may have been gone for ten years, but I've never forgotten.