[Ed. – Read the whole thing.]
When we pulled into the parking lot, we could see a body and a great deal of blood by the front door of the store, as we got closer I could see the body moving so I called for an ambulance. I was also a certified first responder so I could usually keep injured people alive until the ambulance arrived, I was in for a bit of a shock with this one.
As I ran up to the body I could see it was a young female, she was flopping around like a fish. I could see several bullet wounds on her body, but it was when I looked at her face that the shock came in.
She had been shot so many times in the face that it was nothing but mush, her mouth and nose were completely gone and she was desperately gurgling for air. I was completely helpless, I couldn’t clear her airway because there was nothing left, I couldn’t apply pressure to stop the bleeding…nothing. All I could do was stand there and watch her flop around.
The only part of her face that was untouched was her eyes. I’ll never forget looking into those eyes, begging for help, desperate and helpless. Those eyes are burned into my memory forever, I still see them sometimes in my sleep.
Don and I just stood there and watched the life leave them. …
[W]hat really wears a cop out, weighs them down, burns them out…is dealing with the victims.
It never ends, one call after another, day in, day out, year after year. You have no idea what people are capable of doing to each other until you wear that badge for a while.
Yes, of all the death and destruction I’ve seen, the people I’ve shot, the times I’ve been stabbed and shot by others myself…it’s still those eyes that haunt me..