The past month has been an extremely trying one for many of us here in Lake Stevens. With two murders and a drowning it has taken its toll on our community.
As I have covered these stories I have found that just writing about these incidents is exhausting to say the least. Emotions run high and my heart has gone out to the families and friends of those we have lost. I can’t imagine their pain.
During these trying times I have often thought of how these events have affected our local police, those who have had to deal with 9-1-1 calls, investigating crime scenes and then informing families of their loss.
Many of these officers continue to deal with these crimes each and every day in an effort to find out what happened, all while going about their daily calls.
What we, as regular old citizens may have forgotten, is that these officers have also had to deal with the loss of one of their own this month after Washington State Trooper Shawn O’Connell was struck and killed by a truck while assisting with a detour around the Skagit River Bridge collapse on May 31.
Through my job I have the opportunity to speak to many of these officers and am privileged to say that many of them I consider friends. Their diligence and hard work never ceases to amaze and their caring attitudes are obvious when you speak to them about these tragedies.
What many of us forget is that most of these officers live right here in the same city in which they serve. Many have grown up here, gone to our schools, are raising families in our community and they too want to ensure a safe and healthy community.
While we may not think that Lake Stevens Police Officers risk their lives while working in our community, I am sure that their families would disagree. Any officer who goes to work every day is putting their life at risk—no matter where they are serving. You just never know what is going to happen when dealing with violent criminals, domestic violence calls or when directing traffic.
I was impressed to see many of our officers at last week’s March for Molly, several of them came in plain clothes, on their day off and several more volunteered to direct traffic and keep the walkers safe. This is evidence that our officers love this community and want to be a part of it as more than just an officer that works here.
It seems that many out there have a bad attitude towards police officers. They may have given you a ticket you don’t feel you deserved or you may have been caught doing something you shouldn’t be but I know that we all feel much safer knowing that they are just a phone call away.
So, next time you see one of our local LSPD officers give them a wave, a thank you or a thumbs up because you never know when you might need them.