WE’VE GOT YOUR SIX
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When a law enforcement officer is killed in the Line of Duty, there are two families who suffer. The first family that everyone thinks of is the officer’s wife, children, parents, siblings and others who have spent their lives with him. That is only natural. They are his family by blood.
However, there is a second family to be considered: the officer’s Family in Blue. Some might call them “co-workers,” but that would be a horrible understatement of the relationship.
In many ways, the cop was probably closer to his Blue Family than to the ones at home. We don’t just ‘work’ together. We eat together, we fight battles together and in many cases, we have saved one another’s life at one time, or another. Most partners know things about one another that their spouses will never learn.
I took an oath where I promised to “take a bullet” for a brother – all of my brothers — without a moment’s hesitation. Think about that, for a minute.
I have made a promise to give up my life in the protection of the cops I work with along with every other cop in my life. It’s the same promise I made and carry for my wife and children. In my experience, the only people who really understand that commitment are other cops and members of the military.
We live together and we die together.
Consider the depth of love one human being has for another when they share a willingness to die for each other, without hesitation.
In that light, try to understand how cops feel when some low-life has abruptly and viciously take the life of one of their brothers. The ache goes deeper and is more profound than words could ever describe.
Our own Dan Watson talked with Chief Robert Norton of the Florence [SC] Regional Airport. The six officers on their crew buried one of their own in January of this year. The name of their fallen brother was Jackson Ryan Winkeler.
Think about the feelings the surviving five feel every day when they report for duty. Consider how many tears have been shed since Jackson’s death. Yet, they stay strong and report for duty, every day.
Now, take a few minutes to see and hear their stories from their own mouths and in their own words.
“Above all, it’s about going home at the end of the shift … “
We couldn’t agree more.
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