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09-19-07, 02:33 PM #1
Officer death reminds us to be thankful
I know that none of us here need to be reminded to say "thank you," but I thought this was a good article and wanted to share. I have permission from the author to post it here. It's regarding Phoenix Officer Nick Erfle, who was killed yesterday.
Officer death reminds us to be thankful
Laurie Roberts, The Arizona Republic
Sept. 19, 2007 12:00 AM
Like most of you, I got up yesterday morning thinking about what I was going to do after work. It's a luxury, really. We know what the day will bring and when evening comes, we know we'll be going home.
It's not like that for a cop. They're trained to know that danger is all around them, that somebody wants to kill them. It can happen any time, any place, so a day when they make it home is a good day.
Tuesday was a terrible day.
Phoenix Officer Nick Erfle was gunned down in the middle of the morning, in the middle of the city. A husband, a father, a good man, killed by a jaywalker. A jaywalker.
I don't know whether Officer Erfle saw it coming. I know that the rest of us did not. We were blindsided, as we always are when one of the city's finest is cut down.
Bob Newnum was watching TV inside his house, at 25th Street and Pinchot, when he heard the gunshots.
"There was three shots, and then there was a pause and then one more shot," he said, adding that he ran outside and down the block to find the officer lying face down across the sidewalk and into the street, his partner bent over in obvious distress, and police cars flooding the area from every direction.
"How can something like this happen?" he asked me. "How can a police officer get shot like that?"
Virginia Roper was near tears Tuesday morning as she talked about the officer, killed just a stone's throw from Amy's Beauty Salon where she works. "I don't know, I really don't know what to think," she said, as she combed a customer's hair. "Is it a sign of the times? So much violence, and young people are so angry. I don't know what to make of it."
That's because you can't make sense out of senselessness. One of the charms of this, the fifth-largest city, is that these mean streets of ours seem at most merely cranky, and even then only sometimes. But it's an illusion, one that people like me can cling to and take comfort in because of people like Officer Nick Erfle.
Over the next few days, we will hear stories of Officer Erfle, the family man and the officer. How, by the age of 33, he had fought cancer and defeated it, twice. How he was assigned a nice, safe desk job when he recently returned to work and how he lobbied hard to get back to the streets as quickly as possible.
You ask why and a cop just shrugs, as if the answer should be obvious. "It's police work," he said. "He's a police officer."
You nod as if you understand. But of course, you don't. Cops are a different breed. These are people who run toward trouble while the rest of us are tripping over each other to get out of the way. These are people who get up every day and put on a uniform knowing that they may not live to take if off. And do it anyway.
It's easy to criticize them, easy to question why they react as they do on a routine traffic stop or an innocent encounter. Then a good man is gunned down by a jaywalker.
Officer Erfle is the third Valley police officer to die in the line of duty this year. He joins Phoenix Officer George Cortez Jr., who died July 27 while trying to arrest a suspected bad-check writer, and Glendale Officer Anthony Holly, who died Feb. 19, during a traffic stop.
In the coming days, we will honor Officer Erfle and all the men and women who stand between us and the madness that surely exists out there, when a good man can be gunned down in the middle of the morning, in the middle of the city.
At a time of such sadness, there isn't much that we can say to them. Except maybe for this:
09-19-07, 03:46 PM #2
Good writing! Nice to see in a newspaper.
09-19-07, 03:56 PM #3
It's nice to see some of the media haven't lost touch."Like" us on facebook! https://www.facebook.com/pages/Offic...93147194083228
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09-19-07, 09:03 PM #4
WOW what beautiful writing. Thanks for posting.Thereís a promise I need you to make
While Iím gone you take care of the love
And Iíll deal with the hate.
Donít worry about me; Iíll be all right
Just care for your children and sleep tight
Iíll keep you safe on my watch tonight
On My Watch Tonight - Mike Corrado
09-19-07, 09:08 PM #5
That sums it up perfectly.JamesDept of the Army Civilian Police"Loyalty above all else, except Honor"Never forget those who fell on 9/11/01S&W beats 4 Aces every time
09-19-07, 11:26 PM #6
We should be thankful to ALL officers who have died in the line of duty. Great post.
Choose The Right. When you're doing whats right, then you have nothing to worry about.
Not a LEO
In memory of Sgt. Howard K. Stevenson 1965 - 2005. Ceres Police Dept.
In memory of Robert N. Panos 1955 - 2008 Ceres Police Dept.
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