Friday, September 12, 2008

Yesterday Wasn't Much Better...

I hate funerals. Especially cop funerals. Yesterday was my third, and it does not get any easier. What made it even more difficult was the fact that Sergeant Starzyk's department is very close to where I live and work. I did not know Paul personally, but I have known his wife since we were children.

There are often little things that differ from one funeral to the next. A few things really got my attention at Sergeant Starzyk's.

I think the most touching thing for me, what got to me the most, was the patrolman's hat resting atop the casket. I simply could not look at it without my eyes tearing up. It really drove home the fact that there was a cop in that wooden box.

Also, I have never seen the California Highway Patrol honor guard before, and their performance was top notch.

The Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office bagpipers were also very good. When one piper begins playing Amazing Grace I can generally keep it together. But, when the other two joined in, I pretty much lost it along with most of those standing around me.

I'll say it again, if I never have to go to another law enforcement funeral it will be too soon.

6 comments:

RoaVaPD said...

Cop funerals suck. I've lost count how many I've been to. The ones that suck the most are when you know the slain officer. My agency came very close to a funeral this summer. We're due for one soon, it's been a long time. Heads up and stay safe bro.

USAincognito said...

I agree. I hate funerals in general but cop funerals are the saddest. Hits too close to home.
All y'all are in my thoughts and prayers.

TheBronze said...

RIP Paul...

Smitty, what airshow are you going to?

Didn't know you were into planes.

Berserk said...

I've been to three of them within the last three years. Two of those were from my agency.

I'd love to stop counting any time. The pipes always get me. So does the part where dispatch calls the fallen officer on the air and then announces EOW. That's the part that really drives it home for me...

kvegas911 said...

I have the flag from my great-grandfather's. Deputy EW Sanders, Cleveland Co Sheriffs Dept, Shelby, NC EOW 1-1-33. The officer's family and agency wil be in my prayers. We narrowly missed one ourselves a couple of months ago. Stay safe.

Fire Fox said...

Someone special, someone willing to fight the bad guys, someone who wanted to make this a better place for the kids... it's a huge loss, and understandably a tough thing to look at, experience, feel. My prayers for those who are grieving... my respect to you for sharing your thoughts.