Chicago Warriors: Mom and Dad

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"Hello." "Pete, this is Mac, am I calling at a bad time, how are you son?"

"Hi Mac, I'm doing okay...I guess. Beth decided to go to work rather than hang around the house with me. I guess that I'm probably not the best company right now."
"Well, I hope that you are doing as well as can be expected; Shirley and I have been praying for you ever since the shooting occurred. You know that our door is always open if you need anything-anything at all-but especially if you need a place to escape or need to talk. These last few years with both of us being on mids together has given me the opportunity to see the kind of person that you are. I respect and admire the manner in which you conduct yourself on the job and in your personal life as well. I don't know if I'm out of line saying this Pete, but you are like a son that I never had. In fact, you and Joe made being on mids enjoyable. Just remember...I am here for you."

"Thanks Mac, I appreciate that more than you will ever know. Joe and I felt the same toward you and Shirley. Before all of this happened, it's somewhat eerie yet comforting at the same time, but the way that you sometimes look at me reminds me of my dad."

"You know Pete, I know that you parents are deceased, and if I'm prying please stop me, but what happened?"
"No, you're not-it's okay to ask, you're like family. A few years after I went on the job my parents finally decided to take the honeymoon that they never had. When they were married my dad was working full-time at his business and couldn't really be away from it for any period of time. My mom was trying to finish her degree and couldn't be gone more than a weekend, so they just went to the local Holiday Inn for a couple of nights. The years passed by so quickly that before they knew it, Lisa and I were grown and out of the house. They decided to go to Hawaii; my mom had always wanted to visit there anyway, so they celebrated their 25th Anniversary by taking the trip. They had a great time in Waikiki and decided to visit Maui as well. Unfortunately the shuttle plane from Oahu to Maui got caught in a horrific cloudburst and was hit by wind shear. The flight plunged into the ocean killing all 19 passengers aboard."

"Oh Pete, that must have been terrible for you and Lisa."
"It was; we were both devastated by the fact that we lost both of them at them at the same time. But our faith helped us through the hard times and frankly, we looked on the bright side-they both went to be with the Lord together, neither had to mourn the loss of the other."
"Your faith sustained you. I can tell that it plays a pivotal role in your life. I wish that more of our officers were like you."

"Well, I've had so many supportive friends...in particular Joe. We had known each other for so long, having gone through school together and the Army, and then eventually going on the job together. His loss is so difficult to accept. Yet I feel that I am being selfish when I think of how Susan and the boys must be feeling."

"Don't think that way son, we're all hurting. But death is part of the plan that our Lord has for all of us. It's not easy to accept, but we must grieve and then move on."
"I'll try."

"I took a call from Reverand Dean, the Police Chaplain. As you know he's part of the Department's Post Critical Incident Program. You're free to call him and set up a time to sit down and talk about the shooting and its aftermath. It's all sponsored and supported by Headquarters. You can avail yourself of his help now or anytime in the future. I suggest that you take him up on that offer."

"Yeah, I think I will. Dean is a good man; he's always been there for us cops when we're down. I don't know how he keeps his own head on straight with all of the carnage and evil that he must see each day."

"The Reverand is strong...I've talked with him several times, he's one of us."

"Mac, when am I supposed to give my statement?"
"Well, that's another reason why I'm calling. I got a call from the Chief of Patrol's office; they want to know if you're ready yet. If so they will send a team out from HQ to take your statement. They realize that it's only been a couple of days since the incident, and they want you to know that if you need another day or two to compose your thought you've got it."

"No, I'm ready...I really want to get it out of the way."
"Okay. You have the option of either going to HQ or having them come out to the station."

"Will they come out on mids? I'd like to have you in the room while I give the statement. Besides, I haven't been sleeping at night."

"I'm sure they will accommodate your request. Let me put a call into them and I'll get back with you on the details."

"Thanks Sarge."

"Call me if there's anything else I can do for you son...it doesn't have to pertain to the job."
"I will Mac...I will."

Mac's call put me in a better frame of mind. I got dressed and headed over to Queen's; I needed some quiet time with the Lord. I walked inside the church and made my way to the front pew. Getting down on my knees I closed my eyes..."Lord, I know that I've had questions about my faith these last few days-forgive me for doubting that You are the one in control, not me. I pray that you will strengthen my faith and resolve. Help me to comfort my dear friend Susan and her family. Lord, I am having second thoughts about my life right now. Should I even continue with police work, or was this incident a sign from you that I should move on to other things? I'm confused Lord; please clear my mind...set me straight on whatever path will lead me to You and the Father. And if it be your will that I remain a police officer, I pray that you will keep St. Michael in front, in back, and beside me at all times. Amen."

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John Wills spent 2 years in the U.S. Army before serving 12 years with the Chicago Police Department (CPD). He left the CPD to become an FBI Special Agent, working organized crime, violent crime, and drugs.  John Wills is an author of Chicago Warriors: Midnight Battles in the Windy City published by TotalRecallPress.com

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