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Thread: Thought I would pass this on
05-05-08, 01:04 PM #1
Thought I would pass this on
It just fills my heart with pride and my eyes with tears when I see this kind of brotherhood. was posted on the St. Louis City P.D. site called "Cop Talk" Thought I would t pass it on.
It shows how strong a brotherhood we truly have. Just to let everyone know "Back Stoppers" is an organization here in the St. Louis Area that assists Law Enforcement and Fire Department families in case of on duty Death or Catastrophic Injury. The organization is a wonderful thing I hope and pray that every state has an organization such as this.
Here is the artical:
What General George McClellan, who never attended a battle without getting a manicure and a wax first, may have lacked as a Civil War military commander, his descendant/relation columnist Bill McClellan more than makes up for with his humanity, and better, that he uses it with his skill as a writer.
On April 6th, McClellan devoted an entire column to the plight of Sergeant Jeff Kowalski: "After 21 years, gunshot wound still threatens former officer."
Showing some of the best of Old School espirit de corps, this great, bickering, but loyal Blue Family packed the POA Hall. An anonymous donor made T-Shirts possible. Businesses donated appealing things for auction. A buffet of tasty nibbles appeared, the bar was open. People opened their wallets and stuffed jars with envelopes and cash.
And Sergeant Jeff Kowalski, who probably should have been in bed, was crisply attired in a snappy suit, and, with any luck, was hopefully free from pain for a time as he stood on his feet for hours... and shook every hand, kissed every cheek, accepted and returned every bear hug, and most importantly, was completely surrounded and buoyed by the love and support of this Band of Brothers.
McClellan had asked former SLCPD Chief and Executive Director of the Backstoppers Ron Battelle where Backstoppers would stand. The grisly and merciless spectre of cancer had infiltrated Kowalski's system, and while no one could say for medical certainty, it certainly appears suspicious that the cancer has followed the path of the bullets that tore through Kowalski in February 1987.
Battelle said he would look into it and plead Kowalski's case before the Backstoppers' Board.
He was as good as his word:
Two people with sad stories get glimmers of hope, help
By Bill McClellan
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
Let's update two recent columns.
Jeff Kowalski was a St. Louis police officer who was shot in the stomach in 1987 while chasing two robbers. He had serious injuries to his pancreas, his liver and his stomach.
He eventually returned to duty but never regained his health. He suffered from periodic bouts of pancreatitis and had circulation problems. He was given a 100 percent service-connected disability when he retired in 2000.
He and his wife and their three children moved to Texas. Earlier this year, he was diagnosed with inoperable stage 4 cancer. He returned to St. Louis for treatment. Doctors here said the cancer appeared to have originated in his pancreas. Because of the internal injuries from the shooting, he had been unable to afford life insurance.
If the cancer were to prove fatal, would the St. Louis BackStoppers be able to help? That organization provides support for families of police officers and firefighters who are killed in the line of duty.
An oncologist said it was impossible to say with certainty that the gunshot had caused the cancer, but he could say that Kowalski had no other risk factors, just the history of pancreatitis that seemed to stem from the gunshot.
Ron Battelle, executive director of the BackStoppers, said the board would consider the case if the cancer were to prove fatal but would have to consider its guidelines.
Meanwhile, friends organized a fundraiser at the St. Louis Police Association headquarters. They raised $30,467 to help defray expenses .
Last week, the board of the BackStoppers approved a one-time payment of $50,000 to Kowalski under its Catastrophic Injury Program. "The board was happy and honored to help the Kowalski family," Battelle said.
Battelle told Kowalski that St. Louis Police Chief Joe Mokwa was instrumental in getting the board's approval. By the way, that award does not preclude more help if the cancer proves fatal.
Kowalski began chemotherapy treatments last week. I visited at his sister's home Wednesday. He seemed a little weak, but cheerful. "So far, so good," he said.
Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friend. John 15:13
05-05-08, 02:12 PM #2Banned
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A good article and a good cause...It would be great if every city and state had organizations such as this.
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