OFFICER DOWN Those chilling words went over the airwaves again last Saturday. St. Clair Township Police Officer Lloyd E. Reed (54) answered his last call, a domestic disturbance. Lloyd was shot with a high-powered rifle that penetrated his vest. He knew the situation and danger when he arrived on site. His bravery was evident to all. Lloyd died trying to defuse a domestic situation he had encountered several times before. Officer Reed served several Western Pennsylvania Police Departments over his 25 year career.
I am sure his wife, Rosemarie, and other relatives are surrounded by the comfort of Blue for the next few days. However, slowly that comfort will return to duty. I’m sure the drive-by patrols will continue for a while and the phone calls will come checking on her, but eventually everything else will get back to normal.
For Rosemarie, normal will never be the same again. The empty pillow, the stillness, will last her lifetime. She will never hear the laugh, the private conversations they shared together again.
I did not know Officer Reed or the community where he lived and worked. But I do know others who spend their lives protecting us. They are all members of our communities just as Lloyd Reed was. They attend our churches, show up at school functions just like the other parents. Their children attend school and play with our kids. We use the same grocery and hardware store. They are not just “police officers,” but a part of our community. They are our neighbors and friends.
I am going to refrain from drawing politics into this post. I will say that a police officers job has become much more difficult over the last few years. Let us all spend a few minutes and thank those who risk their lives to protect us on a daily basis.
Donations can be sent online to http://www.wppbf.org, (Western Pennsylvania Police Benevolent Foundation) go to the donate page and place comment: “Donation for Lloyd Reed, Jr. Fund.”
Let us all say a prayer that we don’t need to do this again soon.