Fast approaching is Police Memorial Week 2019.  This year the names of 153 police officers taken from us in 2018 will be added to the Law Enforcement Memorial Wall.

Not added to this wall are the names of 165 police officers that died by suicide in 2018.

To date, and it can change daily, the numbers of police officers taken from us in 2019 is 35 and the suicides of LEOs is 66.

 

 

 

I have had the misfortune of being muzzled for nearly ten years, due to legal action that has now run its course.  I have endured the lies. The muzzle is off now, as are the gloves, and I will no longer be quiet.

What people fail to realize about the police culture in the United States is that I am every name on that wall and I am every name on the other list as well.  That is the culture of policing I cut my teeth on when I came on the job, and sadly I see it is time for a change.

 

 

The spirit of brotherhood I used to see on the job seems to be waning.  Statistics don’t lie.  The job is toxic. It is a dangerous profession. We know that as fact.  Some will argue that there are more dangerous professions to the point it becomes monotonous, but of those professions how many include daily interactions with people who simply want to hurt or kill you because of what you are and what you represent?

Where I come from, if you spit on my brother or sister, you have also spat upon me.

 

 

I am that cop

When one of us is killed, it causes something inside us to die,  “La Petite Mort,” (a little death), and that’s the way it should be.

I am that cop

The death of a police officer by suicide is no different.  At least, it shouldn’t be.

I am that cop

Those officers with PTSD are still our brothers and sisters. They are supposed to be. It’s 2019 folks, and asking for help should not end a career.  Politicians and cold-hearted brass need to be educated.  They need to help fix us, not abandon us, and not lie to us.  Cops on the job don’t want to call bullshit on what goes on because it can impact their career negatively.  I don’t work for anybody anymore.  I fear no man.  So, I will say it.  The system needs to be held accountable.

I am that cop

I know the seemingly eternal sorrow of abandonment. I know how it feels to be ostracized and am familiar with the sting of inaccurate and vicious labeling.  I know how it feels to be held incommunicado, to be prisoner in your own mind, prisoner in your own home.  To cry for help, to call for backup, only to hear the crackling static on the police radio, no response, no wailing sirens coming from a distance announcing, “Brother, we are coming for you,” I will tell you this, it is one of the worst feelings in the world, to be alone.

I am that cop

 If you have ever delivered a death notification, telling a parent they have lost a child, or a child that they have lost a parent, or any such scenario that usually ends with gut-wrenching cries of anguish, and felt your own heart break,

I am that cop

 If you have ever stood over a brother or sister officer who has been shot, stabbed, mangled or killed, and felt part of yourself die,

I am that cop

If you have ever visited the scene where a brother or sister officer died, if you have seen their blood (lots of blood) spilled on the ground and watched while the firefighters hosed what was left of your friend, down a storm drain

I am that cop

If you have seen every conceivable act of violence and cruelty perpetrated against one human being by another, or have seen the vertiginous retching horror of the most grisly death scenes, whether by accident, or a crime committed on purpose

I am that cop

If you have witnessed the death grimace on the faces of countless victims, the open eyes clouded by death, the ones who haunt you and left you wondering what their final moments of life were like

I am that cop

If you have seen the suicides of people who chose to “opt out” of life and wonder why they did such a thing in that final moment of desperation

I am that cop

I see every flag draped coffin,

I hear every playing of “Taps.”

I see every grieving widow, widower, child, parent, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, cousin, grandparent, or friend.

 

 

I hear every lone bagpiper playing “The Fields Of The Forest.”

I see every wet-eyed police officer standing graveside

I see every grizzled, hardened, disgusted, on the brink of losing all faith in humanity, police officer.

I am that cop

I hear every curse spat at every cop, every threat of violence.

I feel every punch, every gunshot wound, every stab wound, every kick in the nuts.

 

 

I have seen, stood in, and smelled every crime scene, the blood, the vomit the piss, the shit, the death, the filth, the decay.

I have held the hands of the dead or dying. I have held the crying, hurt, sick, abused, battered, dead or dying babies. I am just like you.

I am that cop

I am with you.

I am standing beside you, shoulder to shoulder.

I will never abandon you.

I will do what I can to help you.

I will do my best to save you, even at my own peril, including my own death.

 

 

I will share what I have with you, whatever that might be.

I will never run away.

I will never give up my gun.

I will never quit fighting.

 

 

I will always guard your back, even if no one is watching mine.

I will never put you in harms way.

I will shield you.

I will defend you.

I will avenge you.

I will tell any boss or politician that attacks you without cause, where they can go, including inviting them outside for a “cup of coffee” to work it out.

I am “Old School,” a dinosaur, not yet extinct, but perhaps on the brink.

 

 

I am that cop

If I have ten and you have zero and need it, when we part company, you will have at least five.

If I have an extra hundred and I know you need it, you don’t even have to ask.

I am that cop

If you have ever pulled the trigger and put an end to a deadly threat

I am that cop

If you need someone who will ask the all-important question “ Are you okay?”

 

 

I am that cop

If you call for help, know this, “I am coming for you!”  I am on my way, no matter the circumstance, no questions asked.  If we go down, we go down together, fighting. If you need someone to go through “that door” I am with you, no hesitation

I am that cop

There are many like us, but there needs to be so many more

Will you be that cop?

At the bottom line, it’s all about saving just ONE life.

AMERICA

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Thank you for taking the time to read this message and allowing us to share this inspiring and gut-wrenching story with you.  Our editor can be contacted via email with questions or input:  Email Editor 

Note:  An article similar to this was previously published by: Law Enforcement Today.

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