I am so sorry for my slacking. I have a few excuses lined up to dish out...mainly my 4 year old and 2 year old, my 4 month old german shorthair, my 6 year old lab, my husband, hunting season, Christmas preparations, and did I mention hunting season? I've been bad about posting. It is a new year, and my ambitions are high. I think I will try to add maybe a "Photo of the Day" section to this blog, starting with this one (Maple: age 4 months):
I have a few tales from this hunting season I can't wait to tell you about....
However, since reading the story last night, my mind has been with Mt Ranier National Park Service Ranger Margaret Anderson and her family. We are often notified via email regarding law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty, but for some reason this one hits home. Maybe it is because she is about my age, with two children who are the ages of my two children.
Every time I think of the events that must have taken place yesterday morning, I find myself wearing her boots and sitting in her patrol vehicle. Would I have realized the potential danger? Honestly, I don't think so. So many times we, as officers, take our safety for granted more than we should. I think this problem runs deeper for fish and game officers and park rangers. Most people we run into are decent people. Most of the time people are compliant. Unfortunately it only takes one.
Today while on patrol, I thought of Margaret and what must have been going through her mind as she set up her vehicle for a road block. Did she see the vehicle coming toward her? Did the hair on the back of her neck stand up?
I thought of her children. Did they watch their mommy get her uniform on that morning? Did they tell her they loved her? Did she tell them?
I thought of her husband. Did he hear the radio traffic? Did he hear his wife's call for help? Were his first thoughts about her or their children?
If only there was something to say to make sense out of it. There isn't. At least I can't think of anything. She should have finished our her shift. She should have gone home to her kids to make them macaroni and cheese for supper. She should have spent the first night of the new year in bed with her husband. She was a mom, and a ranger, and a wife, and it she shouldn't have been stolen from her family and ours by her random encounter with a desperate armed man.
I don't get it. And I can't stop thinking about it. All I know is that from now on I will follow my gut: no vehicle stop I make will be "routine", no person I encounter will be harmless, and every time I leave for work I will remind my daughter and son that no matter what, I love them more than they will ever know.