Honor & Integrity

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“All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honor, duty, mercy, hope.” –Winston Churchill

Most people probably don’t start out their day thinking “I better give that extra hug or special love you, I may not make it back home tonight.” Is it being realistic? Is it making every moment count? Is it treating today like it’s the last day of your life? Is it healthy?

It’s safe to say that we all have a 100% mortality rate and we would be delusional to think that every day is promised, but I don’t wake up in the morning thinking those things.

I’m a realist for sure, ask any of my closest friends and they’ll tell you I don’t sugarcoat life, yet….I don’t leave my house thinking “I may not live until the end of the day.”

Sadly, a lot of people do and right now, those thoughts are constantly on the minds of police officers and those who love them. Believe me, I’m not trying to take away from any life that has been taken during these controversial times, but I am focusing on law enforcement because of what has taken place near me.

We are living in a volatile time. It’s unsettling, saddening, angering, frustrating and horrifying.

It has become a race issue, political issue, gender issue, power issue, hashtag issue and truth issue.

It has managed to steal away the very spirit of the United States and turned us into the “Untied” States. It is unravelling. It is heartbreaking. It is in need of change.

This month has been sad where I live. A local police chief and county sheriff began their day by responding to a domestic dispute and wound up fighting for their lives.

The police chief was wounded, but alive. The deputy was killed. He died later that day from complications, the bullet had severed his spinal cord.

The man who shot them “hated cops” and instead of respecting the law (with all of it’s flaws), he decided to go the violent route. Now a man, who was loved by his community, is gone.

He didn’t go back home that night, he didn’t say his love you’s or give the extra hug.

I went to a memorial a few nights ago. The photos at the end of this post give a visual of what I saw. I didn’t know the murdered deputy, I had never met him, but the story affected us all. I’m not a sheltered person, but for some reason, the bullet holes in the vehicle shocked me.

I couldn’t believe how the metal was mangled and frayed. I could literally see through the hood of the cruiser. I could smell the dirt all over the paint. It left a pit in my stomach.

They hadn’t even gotten out of their vehicle. They were ambushed.

I guess the silver lining to all of this is that the K9 officer, Kina, was found. She was shot twice; the bullet fragments still lodged within the shots to her neck and back. Incredibly, she is expected to make a full recovery, even after wandering the woods for over 24 hours in 100 degree weather, all with her bulletproof vest on. Although Kina isn’t human, she’s an officer. They all are.

I can’t blanket all law enforcement officers as people with “honor and integrity,” just as you cannot blanket all people as “good.” But I can say, the deputy that died eximplified both of those attributes:

Honor and Integrity.

It’s evident in how people have celebrated his life. I can say that the officers who were injured, and lived, also eximplified these attributes, it was evident in the way they handled the situation and the aftermath.

I guess in today’s society, it’s tough to find people who show honor and integrity….that’s sad to me. So, how about we don’t just hold certain people to those standards, how about we all have honor and integrity and make sure that when we wake up every day we venture out with them in our hearts. Because we never know what the day will bring.


4 thoughts on “Honor & Integrity

  1. To who ever wrote this article…THANK YOU! it is a fantastic non bias article that is to the point. I am a retired LEO that DID know Deputy Cooper and you are correct….He was the picture of HONOR AND INTEGRITY.
    Not all law enforcement are bad..not even 1 100th of 1% are. But one bad seed tarnishes all. It’s a shame that all humans are not judged the same!!

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