A senseless death…

We arrived at the Children’s Hospital Emergency Room at the same time.

He and his partner parked and I pulled up to their left and did the same.

I got out of my car and watched as the officer hurried from his seat and opened the back, driver’s side door.

When the officer grabbed the boy from the back seat of his police Tahoe, I knew almost instantly.

There was a split second though, before instantly I guess, where I didn’t know. For that split second, the officer looked like any dad grabbing his sleeping boy from the car and putting the boy’s head on his shoulder to carry him inside to sleep comfortably in his own bed.

For that split second, it was a sweet moment.

The officer, an around fifty year old white guy, clutched the little boy over his left shoulder gently, but with a clear purpose. The boy was small, a black child with his hair in corn rows and dressed as a typical five or six-year-old dresses.

He reminded me of my own six-year-old son.

The sudden, pained look on the officer’s face and the fact that the boy wasn’t crying or yelling or doing anything other than appearing to be asleep made the split second fantasy fade away fast.

We hurried into the emergency room where we were met by the trauma team and hospital staff. I’m always in awe at how these emergency room doctors and nurses and staff are so able to get to working on a patient so fast.

There was some sliver of hope that the boy would make it, at least that’s what we all wanted to believe.

The truth, and I think we all knew it, was that this boy would never fall asleep in his own bed again. When the officer laid the boy down on the gurney and stood back upright, any wind that may have been in my sails quickly faded to nothing.

His shirt said it all.

FullSizeRender (5)

Where the boy’s little heart had laid so close to the officer’s own heart, was a mess that told us things would not end well.

The three of us officers, with nearly fifty years of city police experience under our collective belts, waited not so stoically outside of trauma room two as the doctors and nurses busted their tails to save this little guy.

We paced and exchanged awkward smiles with each other and the nurses and staff who were passing by. There were several times when one or all of us was close to tears, but we held it together.

It was hard for the officer, because he did the best he could and it wasn’t going to be enough. It was hard for me, because I have a son about that age at home and couldn’t imagine anything like this happening to him.

It was awkward because we were all hoping, but we also knew that it was going to take a miracle for that boy to live.

He was not granted that miracle.

Just like that, at a couple of minutes after 8pm, a five-year old boy was gone forever.

The sheet of paper, which I’ve seen way to many times, verified it. It’s the one with a line printed on it. When it’s completely straight, you’ve died. You’ve straight-lined, as they say.

I was done with being in the hospital. I wanted to leave.

To go back to my car, I had to walk past the same group of people who were in the waiting room when we walked past them earlier with the dying boy. Three little boys grabbed at me and asked me if that boy we carried in earlier was dead.

“Did he die, officer? Was that boy dead?” They asked me.

I got no help from their mom, as she was tending to a clearly sick kid of her own.

“Boys, he’s fine. He’s a strong boy, just like you guys.”

I felt bad lying, but it seemed easier than having to explain death to three strange kids all under ten years old.

I went to my car and grabbed a bunch of Dum-Dums from the bag I carry around. Mom was cool with me giving them suckers, and they left me alone about the dead boy they still thought was alive.

I couldn’t tell them that the boy who was about their same age had straight-lined.

Five-year olds shouldn’t straight line.

Why did this one?

Because of gun violence in the city.

The weather was nice so the people were out.

Some people were out with their guns.

Why did this boy have to die?

Was it disrespect?

Drugs?

A woman?

Money?

All stupid reasons to fire a gun anywhere near another human being, let alone children, but here we are again, with another child lost to violence.

We tried to save this boy.

The officer showed up and there was a hostile crowd of people, most of whom had nothing to do with the shooting, and most not even sure what they should be angry at. The were just angry because anger is easy. Patience is hard. Kindness in the face of adversity is hard. Understanding is hard.

Some chose to be angry at the police while others were taking video on their phone. Meanwhile, nobody was helping a child as he lay dying on the sidewalk from a bullet that had torn through his little body.

The officer fought through the angry crowd and put a dying boy he didn’t know in his car.

Did he have to do that?

No.

EMS was coming, but they were too far away. It was too risky to wait for them, so we raced that little guy to the hospital in record time. We had all sorts of cars shutting down the route to the hospital, just like we would were a fellow cop shot and in need of medical care. That’s about the highest honor we can give a person, and this boy deserved it.

Still, it didn’t matter on this night.

I truly believe that when it’s your time, it’s your time.

Five years shouldn’t be anyone’s time, but that’s not my call.

It’s queer, but I left hospital and went back in service to handle more calls. I had to handle some subsequent calls with a little dead boy freshly on my mind.

That’s the thing with policing. It never ends. You have to carry on, so I pretended to care about a car accident and a stolen bike when I just wanted to shout in their faces, “AT LEAST YOU DIDN’T DIE AT FIVE YEARS OLD FROM A BULLET THROUGH YOUR CHEST!!! I HAVE NO INTEREST IN YOUR BULLSHIT PROBLEMS RIGHT NOW!”

But that’s not professional.

I’m wrapping this up having finished a six pack of Bud Light Lime and I just kissed all three of my own sleeping kids as well as my wife. I also laid on the ground and wrestled my dogs at 2 am, even though one of them is dying and has no interest in playing, and I have to work in the morning.

I’m still thinking about a boy I never met alive, and hoping he’s in a better place.

I’m looking at my own six year old’s homework folder and wondering if this dead boy has a homework folder in a backpack never to be turned in again. Will his mom see it when she gets home and cry? Did he have a lunch packed for the next day that will still be in the fridge this weekend to remind his family of a lunch that was never taken to school?

Did he go to kindergarten?

Will somebody have to explain to his classmates that they’ll never see this little guy alive again and why?

This is all too sad and it needs to stop.

Someone please figure out how.

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401 Responses to A senseless death…

  1. amanda says:

    There is no social club on death row, its a separate wing of the prison that is away from general population, where inmates are locked down for 23 hours with a bed, toilet, sink, and table. No t.v,( some may be allowed t.vs after proving good behavior) they get an hour yard time where they are locked in a fence (not much bigger than a outside dog kennel) with a slab of concrete at there feet.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well u should not break the law and maybe would not be in that prison and what does that have to do with this article! A little boy died

    • Anonymous says:

      Good I hope they never see the light of day!!!!! They deserve to be right where they are

    • Ruth says:

      And this has what to do with a child being shot killed what part of that dont we as society get…what hope does a society have when more and more of our future is being killed
      if they are on death row then they need to be there, ONLY the worst of the worst people are put there the problem we have is we give FAR to much sympathy to the killers and not enough to the hundreds of killed in this country… the dead are dead they have no rights.. but the killers get everything…

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m not sure you should reply to anything Amanda !! Not trying to be mean but your comment is way off !! A child dies and your talking about prison !! May I ask what this has to do with this story I would like to hear the reason for your comment cause maybe we aren’t understanding !!

    • Anonymous says:

      Death row is the second best place on Earth for murderers. The best is a cemetery.

  2. Bob Erskine says:

    Amanda, what do your comments have to do with this article?? If you’re trying for sympathy for death row inmates, good luck. It would be someone like one of those idiots who fired the gun that killed the little kid in this article.

  3. Anonymous says:

    This is so sad and depressing a kid loses his life and he spared the other kids the nightmares and heartache of telling them then went out to continue his daily job as a hero….. cops don’t get enough credit!!!!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think Amanda was trying to say being on death row is no good place to be and trying to discourage others from doing things that would land them there.

  5. Jeff Casey says:

    someday smart law abiding blacks are going to tire of the thugs then this crap might stop

  6. Anonymous says:

    First of all, I have worked in a correctional facility and they are not mistreated as portrayed. one hour of yard time is all they need, The other 23 hours is still accessible to other inmates. If you commit murder then you should be locked in a box and put away

  7. LR says:

    Thank you for being thoughtful, both in your work and here. I think you’re onto something when you point to anger, and it’s coming from all sides, for a multitude of reasons–most of them quite justified. I’m not sure where we make any more inroads against that anger without bigger, more inclusive moves toward greater social, economic, and educational equity. Unfortunately, most states and the nation as a whole seem headed in the opposite direction.

  8. Catherine Murphy says:

    As I read this my heart stood still. As I read the description of the scene where this officer looked around knowing the angry crowd and the golden hour for this small victim of his own city. A victim of being born in a world where the violence is continuous, not on CNN, or the streets of the middle east ,but here in his own town. He wanted to play. It was so beautiful out this day. Even in a city where violence reigns, the parents still want to bring smiles to the faces of their children. So going to the park was a perfect thing to do. I’m glad they got to go. I wonder if he ran a lot there. Most 5 year olds do right? Did he laugh on the playground? Did someone push him on the swings? Did he wear himself out like most 5 year olds do? Was he awake as violence struck? Did he hear the gunfire. Did he see the others get shot? Did he see his daddy grab the gin to fire in return. Did he hear the 9 11 call? I pray not. I n prat God took home at point blank. I pray for comfort for the family. I pray for peace among all of them. I can’t stop thinking of this officer
    He woke up that day knowing he could be in danger. He woke up knowing he could possibly never see his beautiful family again.. He said goodbye to his family. His dog and once he put on that uniform, he was a St Louis police officer who ton an oath to serve and protect. He took an oath to place himself in our city to protect “us”. But on this day who would think he would not be able to even protect himself or a dive year old victim of the violence in this world. Who would h Ave thought that despite the angry crowds.despite the protesters? Despite the mobs trying to block streets. this officer saw one thing. And only one thing. A dying child. A 5 year old with a bullet through his body. All he see and feel was this child. And he flew into action. He rushed to the children’s hospital. He held the boy closer to his own beating heart. And he waited. He waited as the St Louis children’s hospital doctors did everything possible to save this little 5 year old boy. Sadly this was not to be. The child died. His life was over at 5. And this officer who wears his blood stained uniform cries. He had prayed so hard this boy would survive. When he went home to his family that night did he cry. Did is family see the bloody uniform. Did his dog lay at his feet? When he showered where did he put the bloody shirt? Who will wash that blood away? Should he wash it at all? This is a reminder of the little 5 year old who was not allowed to live because of violence among those dealing in drugs and violence. A world where bullets fly and children die. And police officers still try to protect in a dangerous world.

  9. pinkim95 says:

    Thank you for trying…

  10. mike says:

    Is this the kid the cop shot in two seconds?

    • Anonymous says:

      Idiot

    • arsumbris says:

      This is the kid whose parents wound up in a shoot-out over his dad talking to a guy who stopped in the middle of the street and blocked traffic. The lunatics in Fergistan decided they were fit to execute a whole family over that supposed insult. This cop got there to help, and was met with a sea of angry, ignorant faces holding up camera phones to catch what their ignorant, racist, gullible victim-complex little minds assumed was a police shooting. People I’m sure who were exactly like you on the inside of your rotten little skull, Mike.

      TBH I hope this officer applies for job in another department, in a city without the kind of psychotic mass insanity that St. Louis has decended into. Far, far away from ignorant, hateful, hopeless, self-destructive people like the ones living in Fergistan. May the good people of that city all move somewhere else too, and leave those who would drag them down behind. Let the dregs of society consume each other! Anyone with any sense would move anywhere else, even if it was a painful struggle to do so.

  11. Concerned says:

    Mike…. You are an ignorant racist. Because of you and others like-minded, this world will always be a dangerous place for all innocent youth.

  12. C.J. says:

    Children today, not all but way too many, are not taught from the time they are toddlers to control their tempers and consequences. By the time they are in kindergarten they are already out of control. By teen years many of them are now in gangs, disrespect any form of authority including from parents, teachers, employers, officers and other people in general. Our local police chief said parents of grade school children bring them to the Juvenile Department and say “Here, you raise them because I can’t do anything with them.” This started back in the 1960’s and has gotten much worse. Remember in the Hippie Dippie days when that generation’s theme song was “no one is going to tell me what to do! “. I predicted things were really going to go down hill when they started breeding a new generation to disrespect all authority and here we are today. Teachers are to give Social Promotions because, heaven forbid if they give a student a failing grade or give any form of detention or punishment parents are quick to threaten lawsuits…and follow through. When my son was in high school in the early 1970′ s he complained it was difficult to study in class with blackboard erasers flying around the room and teachers who told those students to go to the Principals Office were told to go to hell. Fast forward to today when we now have school shootings. Too many parents don’t want to do their job, which is to raise a child to take its place in society and become a productive citizen. How many times have we heard a parent say they cannot do anything with their child and throw up their hands in despair? When it comes to prejudice among races, remember…a child is not born with prejudice but learns it from others, starting at home.
    Being a good parent is the most difficult one a person will ever experience because we have to be the mean old mommy or daddy who says “NO” and means it EVERY Time. The bad parent just lets a child do whatever he or she wants and that child will have a difficult time of it with playmates, in school, jobs, relationships including in marriage and raising their future children.

    • Jamie Flynn says:

      Amen… I always say that if you want to see the real perpetrator, look at the parents. not to say the shooter isnt guilty, he is! There comes a point when EVERYONE knows right from wrong, whether taught it or not! And in response to the person who said whites kill as much as blacks…. thats BULLCRAP. Just take a look at the numbers of murders in majority black areas as compared to majority white areas. This DID start in the 60s, when Johnson was in office. They started handing out money to low income minorities, with restrictions such as the father could not live in the house…a HUGE mistake! Prior to this time, black people were a PROUD, INDEPENDENT people. They took pride in raising their children in the way God wanted them to go. Not all, but a good portion of the black community have no sense of what the great Dr. Martin Luther King was about, what he wanted for his people…(hint- it wasnt living off the government teet and living without God…PS allah is NOT God!) Until we ALL return to God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and bring our children up in the way GOD would have them go, then we have no one to blame but ourselves when we stand before His throne and he tells us to give an account of our lives and the wrong way our children went!!!!!

  13. markbialczak says:

    I’m sad for everybody there, and here, and you, and that little boy. Damn, Don. God damn.

  14. LOri says:

    Everything is not about race. READ the article he arrived at the scene. He tried. THE COP TRIED TO SAVE HIM!!!!! the People around him wanted video. For what? 5 minutes of fame, maybe? This child could have been raised in any neighborhood in America. Shootings happen in EVERY socioeconomic class. It could have happened at school. This country has become so violent. Why? We need to take back our cities, our neighborhoods, our schools from the negative influences. Quit blaming the schools. Quit blaming the teachers. Quit blaming the government. What did you do to better your environment. Do YOU know where your child is. Do YOU know what they are doing? Do YOU get mad when some one else corrects them? Why are you mad at a teacher because YOUR child is acting the fool and is making it so other kids in a class of 40 cant learn. Pull your head out America. Be involved with your kids. If you can’t afford them or don’t have the time. DON’T have them. They are your responsibility to teach them right from wrong. To teach them tolerance to teach them shoot a gun in a city is not right. To try and take another li
    fe is wrong. Foundations to end violence start at home!

    • DrMrsTheMonarch says:

      No, not in every neighborhood.
      Yesterday, someone parked in my assigned space in front of my home.
      I have a lung disease which prevents me from walking very far, and was out of oxygen in my tank. I sent my young daughter to ask the person to move.
      The man came straight out, apologized and moved. I apologized for having to ask, and pointed to my empty tank. I thanked him for understanding, and he offered to carry my groceries. We smiled and waved and went about our business.
      No shots were fired. If he had somehow been less than the total gentleman he was, no shots would have been fired. We use words where I live, not guns to settle disagreements.
      Please don’t even try to perpetuate the myth that this happen equally in every socioeconomic class, because that is not true. It happens in some far more often than in others.
      The first step of fixing a problem is identifying exactly what is wrong. Deflecting blame and trying to say it happens everywhere when it doesn’t fixes nothing.

  15. Joann says:

    We live in a country that has more criminal violence than any other country. Children are dying from bullets that enter their homes from gang violence, from abuse from their parents and from the sick individual that drive around looking for a child to sexual abuse and the kill. If that is not enough we have children killing children in our schools. Until we realize that violence solves nothing it will continue. I feel for this child”s parents and his young friends who will learn a hard lesson about the world they live in. We need stop responding to violence with violence. Our prisons are full because of the society we live in and choice to ignore the truth about what goes on.

    • VeeDub says:

      If you look solely at the number of crimes, then yes the US leads the way. BUT! If you look at the number of people committing crimes in a country.

      If you look at the numbers objectively, the US comes in #8, behind many of those European countries who look down their noses at us.

  16. Don, …what can I say except a prayer for you, for the little boy’s family and for everyone everywhere who is hurting…I pray for comfort and ears to hear and eyes to see , for hearts to be filled with unspeakable, incredible, unending love for each other and ourselves. Not that selfish, greedy love…no that isn’t love; but for the kind of love where we understand each other and have mercy on each other and compassion. The kind of love that forgives and is empathetic…giving, healing, caring and nurturing.

  17. Anonymous says:

    So sad. Prayers for everyone involved.I have a question though. Did anyone get a lead on the person that did the shooting, was he caught? I haven’t heard. Justice for this sweet boy and his family.

  18. Derek says:

    After reading a lot of these comments I am struck by one theme…this is a black community primarily…these issues don’t exist in the suburbs or small towns
    These parents according to the one comment were DIRECTLY responsible for their sons death getting involved in a gun fight over being “offended” …well if that’s the threshold I to am offended…but I’m not stupid as it appears the entire hood is
    The bottom line…how do we stop this???…we can’t…and the more we “try”…the less likely THEY will be willing to try for themselves
    and I’m tired of the lies…if…”black lives matter”…then the black trash of society wouldn’t have been trying to film ‘ faces of death ‘ they would have been trying to help
    Its time to kick the training wheels off equality…its time to quit paying these people to not raise their kids under the guise that we are helping…its time to call this what it is an abortion…yes this poor kids “mommy & daddy” would rather be nwirds than parents and as such made a terrible choice

  19. Tristan says:

    Amazing piece. Just for the record, the term is flat-lined, not straight-lined.

  20. Carl Gray says:

    We live in a sheltered country. Terrorists don’t bomb us daily, groups don’t wander and slaughter people, genocide doesn’t happen here. But murder does, senseless as it is.
    If you believe in God, you’d know that little boy is going back home to be with his real Father. He’s so happy right now. It still hurts to see kids die or anyone die who seem too young to leave.
    If your dad calls you home for dinner, you gladly go.

    • Your comment is no doubt sincere. But the reality is that the child lies cold in a grave. Dead, long before his time was due. The ‘God’ issue and the use of it as you have done merely distracts people from the real issue and contributes nothing to a solution. “Going back to be with his real father” is just sugary nonsense to make readers feel better and move on quickly. Respectfully -wake up.

  21. Anon says:

    This is heartbreaking. Of course, swap out “5 year old” with “12 year old” and you have Tamir Rice. Who was shot by a trigger happy cop. Nice of a cop to post this “white savior” blog about a white cop trying to save a black child after (implied) black on black violence.
    Now how about a post that has a white cop standing up for the same innocent black child- when that child was shot by another cop. No? Not today? Shame.

  22. Anon says:

    Also- end the absolutely failed and useless “war on drugs” and 90% of this violence goes away. Just sayin- there’s a pretty simple solution here. Wailing about “violence” is not that solution.

  23. Anonymous says:

    God bless you for caring and doing everything you can, no matter how people treat you. And God bless our country with peace and respect for one another, no matter who we are or where we come from.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Thank you officer for telling the story from a cops point of you !! I’m sure it’s hard for you guys to go on sometimes it sickens me these days that people rather video a child dieing 8n stead of saving his life !! I would love to know where the human races hearts have all gone because I’m seeing this more n more !! If I was to see someone in need of help and is on the verge of death , no matter the situation or person my first instinct is to save that person !! I also don’t understand how some criminals can say they believe in a god because if they did then harming another person wouldn’t be something they’d beable to do !!

  25. Reblogged this on Dictated Assault on the Conscious Entity and commented:
    Such pain. Such reflection. There is nothing more I could say about this that has not already been said. There is no reason this boy had to die. There is nothing he could have done in this life to deserve it. This man’s words spoke to me. Pulled at me.
    Too often on social media we are seeing headlines, cops to blame for this or that and I am sure someone somewhere said the same of these officers.
    Despite all that, I salute you . I salute officers everywhere that face these atrocities on the daily. I salute the men and women that risk their lives for strangers.

  26. ibpilot says:

    I know how but no ones listens to good people. Hell most people would not know a good person if he fell on their heads.

  27. Don, I don’t know how you do it but I am so glad that you do. The world needs more of you.

  28. pegoleg says:

    Jeez, Don. You’ve written this so eloquently, and it is so, so tragic. Wish I had even one, teeny tiny solution to make it stop.

  29. Linda Sheridan says:

    Godspeed to all who are trying to make this world a better place. Healing lights to everyone’s mind, body, soul. We are all God’s children. This little boy paid the price for others not living their lives well. I believe we all go when we are supposed to go. One minute you see apparent police profiling, the next you see police being gunned down. It has to stop. March with your signs to protest this poor baby dying from adults not living as they should. Obey the law, don’t profile.
    Police officers have a tough job trying to split-second decide the right course to take. Again, Godspeed and all the lights and angels to all.

  30. write4you says:

    This is such a poignant, emotional piece of wonderful writing. God Bless You for giving us just a small insight to what the majority of police officers experience day to day, this day obviously being the worst. Your words truly enlightened me.

  31. Anonymous says:

    They need to get st Louis under control to many fuckin gang bangers

  32. herheadache says:

    Reblogged this on Her Headache and commented:
    Gripping, moving, and senseless.

  33. Thank you for sharing and for all you do. I have nothing but respect for the men and women, like you, who serve their communities in this way. Best to you.

  34. VeeDub says:

    Most of you missed what the author was REALLY getting at. This is not a story about a young child getting killed. This is a story designed with the sole purpose to make you mad at guns and gun owners. The gun didn’t walk itself outside and shoot anyone. The low life thugs, that liberal society have been protecting for over 50 years, shot the kid.

    Do you blame the car for the drunk driver? Do you blame the airplane when it crashes? Do you blame the train, when someone drives in front of a train? How about the 10,000 people who die every year because of mistakes in hospitals? 100,000 people die each year because of prescription drugs. Where is the outrage for all of those deaths?

    If the child in this story had died from ANY of the other causes above…. there would not have been a story!

    I’m sorry the child died. I am a parent who had to bury a child, and I know the pain parents left behind endure. But let’s stop trying to ban guns by using the dead as tools. Let’s put the blame where it belongs and it belongs with the person or persons who pulled the trigger. NOT the gun.

    Use of knives, bats, personal body weapons and blunt objects are the tools, which criminals use to take far more lives than guns. Criminals will always get their weapons, no matter what. That is a FACT! http://www.top10stop.com/lifestyle/top-10-most-common-murder-weapons

    • Unlike all the other items you mention (planes, prescription drugs etc) guns serve no useful other purpose. All the others serve a useful purpose in the greater scheme of life. Your argument does not hold intellectual water.

      • Many people hunt for food. Some of the hunters use guns.

      • About 150 years back – correct. I was not aware that modern day USA was a hunter/gatherer society. Thanks for info.
        Realistically guys (and lets be honest here please) – if you have 300M privately held guns in your country, what do you expect to happen in a statistically small number of cases? Answer – too many gun deaths by far. Next time you watch TV and see another slaughter of your kids at some school by some deranged nutcase please consider my argument. And yours – “some people hunt for food” FFS!!! And as for the – ‘its the man who kills, not the guns’ argument – it is patently impossible to shoot someone without a gun!
        No civilised modern country has such a gun culture as USA. As I make the point elsewhere on this post Yemen is Nr 2 in the world when it comes to private guns in private hands. We know the historical reasons why in the case of USA. But there are no longer any British troops trying to keep you in the empire, or no longer any native indians firing arrows at your wagons, so maybe you could make a small start on this issue. For example – confine all automatic rifles to secure safes at gun ranges for those who like the cordite smell and the buzz of using one. Make it a criminal offence to possess one outside of that one exception. Then maybe your kids and your police officers might be a lot safer doing their normal kids & cops stuff each day.
        Food for thought maybe.

      • You throw a great many words out there, but you really have no true argument. Most of the guns used to kill were NOT obtained legally. Take away all the guns from the legal gun owners and those other guns will still be obtained illegally. As for telling me to shut up — very intellectual! I’m so impressed — NOT!

        By the way, there are a great many people who still hunt for food. You are welcome for the info!

      • Don’t see any shut up in my reply. And I am not distinguishing between legal & illegal Carrie. The whole gun culture in USA is just incredible to the outside observer. Not my way to insult anyone, and apologies if my replies to you are a little disrespectful or OTT. Emotional issue. Am sure we all want less death and less guns, in wrong hands in particular. Maybe the whole problem is unsolvable to a large degree. Any possible solutions that just might work will be opposed by too many people. Sad from any point of view.

      • VeeDub says:

        The person posting here is not an American. He’s Irish, and another European know-it-all who, just because he has a degree and platform, is suddenly infused with all knowledge in EVERY subject matter, and possesses the only possible answer to any topic he sees.

        Of course with some of the strictest gun laws around, that SHOULD mean that Ireland has no problems with gun violence. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Deaths_by_firearm_in_Northern_Ireland

        Lots of interesting comments here, including the fact that Ireland does not recognize a person’s right to defend themselves in an attack, with a handgun.
        http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/index.php?topic=14011.0

      • Thankfully in recent years we (Irish) put most of the guns out of commission. Thanks in part to some assistance from your Mr Clinton. The vast majority of the high calibre (and other) weapons got buried in concrete. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decommissioning_in_Northern_Ireland Now there’s an idea for you Mr VD, from an Irish ‘know-it-all’. I don’t profess to have the only answer – as you state. But to me, and I am sure to you also, there are too many gun deaths in USA. So new ideas required surely. Next kid might be yours, God forbid. I read recently that one of your rap singers started a project in some low income areas for people to hand in their weapons. It’s a good start. From a segment of USA that often glorifies guns (rappers). Would be great to see that rolled out all over. Don’t want a shit-fight with you VD. But 11,200 firearm deaths in USA in 2013 (just looked that up) should make everyone sit up. Something ain’t right.

      • VeeDub says:

        Just because YOU have not found a useful purpose for guns, doesn’t mean there aren’t any!

        Just because YOU have a problem understanding the many useful lifesaving benefits of weapons, doesn’t mean there aren’t any.

        Just because you think my “argument” (cute how you turned my post into an argument) does not hold intellectual water, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t.

        YOUR argument does not hold intellectual water.

      • I note the absence of any reasoning (or mention) of high calibre automatic weapons in public ownership. Surely they do not fall under your “lifesaving benefits of weapons” argument. Let’s just wait for the next school shooting. Then read your arguments again. And let’s just agree to disagree for the moment. Happy shootin!

      • VeeDub says:

        Michelle (yeah I caught your little name calling ploy… So childish, and you call yourself educated? So right back atcha asswipe) people die every second, and you pick and choose which numbers you want to spew to slant any intelligent debate to fit your scenarios on the way the world “should” be.

        More than 2.5 million deaths occur in the US every year. Center for Disease Control and Prevention numbers: 2011: 2,513,171 2010: 2,468,435 These numbers do not includ

        Heart disease is America’s No 1 killer, taking one life every 35 seconds. Cancer causes one death every 56 seconds. Accidents are also a major cause of unexpected death.
        In hospital 90,000 One American dies in a hospital from a medical error or a lethal infection every 6 minutes

        Transport 43,443 One American killed by a traffic accident every 12 minutes

        Poisoning 19,457 One American accidentally poisoned to death every 27 minutes

        At home 18,048 One American killed in an accident at home every 29 minutes

        Falls 17,227 One American killed in a fall every 31 minutes

        Drunk driving 16,885 One American killed by a drunk driver every 31 minutes

        Homicide 16,137 One American murdered every 32 minutes

        Drowning 3,306 One American drowned every 159 minutes

        Of the 2,500,000-plus Americans who die each year, over 45,000 are killed in transport accidents. The number of homicides, poisonings, and drunk driving fatalities are roughly the same, at around 17,000 each. Perhaps more surprisingly, a stunning 178,000 Americans die from medical or hospital error every year.

        So by your “logic”, we should close all hospitals. Tell ya what, when you start paying taxes in America, maybe then, and only MAYBE then, your opinion MIGHT mean something to me. Until such time as you join out tax club, sod off!
        https://scontent-atl.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpa1/v/t1.0-9/11074547_982316878445082_1729282069207321768_n.jpg?oh=9393db6b22a88b0f91cf3de7ed6bb0d1&oe=55AA0DE8

      • VeeDub says:

        Despite news media impressions to the contrary, there are not many murders in the United States that are committed with rifles or shotguns. Combined, it is under 1,000 per year—more people are murdered with knives. FBI data shows that most murders are done with handguns. Random killings are very rare, most are between people who know each or rival gang members. In other words, stay out of areas, such as parts of Rahmaland, and your chance of being killed by a stranger is very, very slim. Further data to contemplate: In 32% of the murders in 2010, no firearm was used at all.

        http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2012/12/how-people-are-murdered-in-united-states.html

        I will restate my first position. This is not a story about a young child getting killed. This is a story designed with the sole purpose to make you mad at guns and gun owners.

        At this point I would also venture a guess the story isn’t even factual. It’s most likely a work of fiction, made up to support the author’s bias against guns.

      • Was a few comments from others at the scene. So seems genuine. And have no reason to doubt the author as reading his stuff for quite a while. Genuine guy.

      • A six year old boy was shot in St. Louis. The news reports that officers rushed him to the hospital, but it was too late. This would support Don’s take of what transpired and how it affected him as a person and an officer.

      • VeeDub says:

        Sigh! Didn’t say the incident didn’t happen. I wrote “It’s most likely a work of fiction, made up to support the author’s bias against “, and you just confirmed it.

        The story is written in the first person (you’re an edjumicated know-it-all, you should know what that means), as if the author was physically there writing what he personally observed.

        If the author wasn’t physically there, then (even though the story may be “BASED ON A REAL INCIDENT”) it is a work of the author’s imagination.

        The author wrote “We arrived at the Children’s Hospital Emergency Room at the same time.” This was the very first sentence. If he wasn’t there, then it becomes fiction with the very first word of the story.

        But kudos for shifting the conversation once my gun facts blew your hyperbole out the window.

      • “St. Louis Officer’s Account of 6-Year-Old’s Shooting Death Goes Viral” http://stlouis.cbslocal.com/2015/03/13/st-louis-officers-account-of-6-year-olds-shooting-death-goes-viral/ There is no reason to doubt that the author is a police officer and that he wrote about the incident as he saw it unfold and his reaction to the death of this little one. Your arguments are not dependent upon this story being a piece of fiction, so it’s okay to let michealdebarra be right on this point. I, too, think the author is a genuine guy.

      • VD. I do not agree that your so called “gun facts” do anything other than falsely bolster your ‘lack of gun control’ cause and give you a false sense of your own importance & intelligence. Again I state – all items mentioned by you (from a hammer to a hospital) have a primary function which serves mankind for good in some way The fact they they, like almost everything else in this world, can and sometimes do produce less that the desired results (hospitals) or get misused for evil purpose (hammers/killing) does not mean we ban them.

        Your (simpleton) attempt to use such argument merely confirmed to me that I was dealing with a guy of tunnel vision who sees only his own side of the argument. Hence my lack of response. Your narrow minded & bigoted opinion that I have no right to comment unless I pay American taxes just reinforces such opinion. Does this argument apply to American intervention in various countries? (which I can often support). And we are both having a discussion on a forum with over 60M members of every Nationality under the sun. The world is a bigger place than just the USA VD.

        Your latest comment about a “fictional” story is easily explained by the fact that they had 2 cop cars. But tit appears to me that the story seems to make you very uncomfortable. They fact that the the kid died from a handgun, and you do not seem to support any controls on such weaponry in American society, leads you to try to rubbish the story and a good man completely.
        Better, in my opinion, that you stand up like a man and stick to your guns, so to speak. You do not support gun control. Fine. That’s your opinion. Just say it, stick to it and do not tarnish the reputation of a good man (the officer) with speculative falsehoods. My opinion is that some sensible & balanced gun control measures might lead to a reduction in the numbers of deaths of Americans of all creeds & colours each year in USA. Surely even you VD you would support this goal.

        But I do not pay American taxes so don’t listen to me. “Sod off” as you previously told me. That’s your prerogative. Or switch the argument to the totally irrelevant fact that I am Irish (as you did) to try to rubbish me and my opinions on that basis. You are truly an intellectual VD!

        Sadly, the advocates of unhindered access to guns of any sort such as yourself, are rarely open to much or any logical reasoning, and for sure lack any sort of world or broader view. 11,000 or so deaths each year in USA from fire arms. You are happy with the status quo. Fine. I am not and believe that the world (USA in this case) could be a safer & better place.
        I do not wish to engage further with you VD. You have your opinion & position and I have mine, which is incidentally, shared by millions of tax paying Americans.
        Good luck to you VD. Stay safe.

        And my name is not Michelle!!!

  35. One of the acronym definitions claimed FFS was suggesting one shut up. If that is not what you intended, then I apologize. On the other hand, while we all want less death, it’s important not to get carried away in an emotional response. Important that we seek the “cause” and deal with that. For example, Sandy Hook – the shooter had serious mental issues. That’s what led him to act out — not a gun.

    Then we have the Boston “bombing”. Bombs can be made from a variety of things — including household items. Point being — if they have this over-powering desire to kill — they will find a way. So, rather than take guns away from the legal and responsible gun owners — we need to focus on why these people kill and deal with changing their desire to do so.

  36. Here’s an example that equals confiscating guns. Some people drink & drive. Impaired & choosing to drive a car — they harm or kill others. Because some people drink & drive – we should take away all cars from all people.

    • VeeDub says:

      Agreed Carrie: Using their “logic” we should also get rid of hammers and clubs.

      “According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle.

      This is an interesting fact, particularly amid the Democrats’ feverish push to ban many different rifles, ostensibly to keep us safe of course.

      However, it appears the zeal of Sens. like Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) is misdirected. For in looking at the FBI numbers from 2005 to 2011, the number of murders by hammers and clubs consistently exceeds the number of murders committed with a rifle.

      For example, in 2011, there was 323 murders committed with a rifle but 496 murders committed with hammers and clubs.”

      So now it’s also time to start chopping off hands and fists!!!.

      “Another interesting fact: According to the FBI, nearly twice as many people are killed by hands and fists each year than are killed by murderers who use rifles.”

  37. Kristi says:

    So sad. 😦 innocent children need to be left out of these situations. So much respect and thanks goes out to this Law Enforcement.

  38. Pingback: A senseless death… | Carrie's Take

  39. Maggie O'C says:

    Reblogged this on Misc. Maggie and commented:
    From Officer Don, more brilliance.

  40. rumpydog says:

    I am a child abuse investigator masquerading as a dog. I get no respect either. It bothers me that my 20-something cousin is posting about how her life sucks because Taco Bell stopped carrying Baja sauce, and I’m thinking about kids and their parents who need my help, but I am one person with an overloaded caseload and so I have to prioritize. I hate if, but I promise you that next time, if the situation is bad enough, we’ll get you the help you need. Maybe.

  41. sargy7 says:

    Heart breaking stuff.

  42. acflory says:

    Your post made me cry. Thank you for showing that heart still exists in the world. Maybe one day we’ll all have some common sense as well.

  43. acflory says:

    Reblogged this on Meeka's Mind and commented:
    This post is close to my heart because children are beyond precious. They are life itself. Please read it.

  44. kaleidoscope says:

    I first want to say that this is both a sad and hopeful story. Sad in the sense that an innocent boy, prematurely lost his life. Hopeful in the sense that, regardless of all the recent negative media attention of white officers in black communities and senseless killings, this shows that there are people who do their job, not for a paycheck or glorification but because they are true servants of the communities they work in. These officers truly embodied what it means to serve and protect.

    I read through the vast majority of the responses posted and would like to say this:

    When it comes to the word RACE, it is not a scientific term, but a socially implanted one. We are all Homo sapiens sapiens (the scientifically correct term), so why we choose to continue to down each other based on the amount of melatonin in our skin is beyond senseless.

    When stories like these are shared, yes each person has their initial opinion based on the emotions that it invokes, but readers should take the time to really see the bigger picture. There are so many elements at work in this story and in the US, particularly as it relates to crime. One needs to understand both the sociology and psychology of communities as it relates to behavior, in order to recondition these negative behaviors.

    For those that read this and jump to conclusions, let me break it down a little further before you think or say anything else. Say you go out and you buy a puppy and all the basic items to care for this puppy. You have to train this puppy to go to the bathroom outside, to not eat table food, to not jump on furniture, and to guard your home. HOW you do this is essential. If you beat the puppy into compliance, as the puppy grows into a dog, the method used to create a stimuli can result in reactions that are aggressive, timid, compliant, unruly…. the list goes on.

    This is true of people. So before casting blame on entire groups of people, mind you generalizations are often inaccurate anyway, take into consideration how the people who make up these communities were taught. Keep in mind that WE have created socially acceptable behaviors within major communities and the smaller subsets. WE have chosen to be followers and not leaders. WE have chosen to let media and technology be the dominating influences of nearly all aspects of our lives. WE have chosen to not hold accountability but to cast blame because it is the easier path.

    When you put all these pieces together, and there are more I haven’t even touched bases on, then it makes a little more sense as to why these things are happening. The real questions are, what are we going to do to promote positive and effective change in all these communities. When are we going to reconnect with love and compassion as a unit, as a whole, rather than all these subsets and divisions?

    It is shameful that this little boy had to die in the way that he did. We shouldn’t let his death, or any other child’s whose life ended due to violence, mean nothing. Perhaps we should look at his death as a means to break down hastily made barriers created in fear and ignorance, and instead build sturdy bridges from a solid foundation that bring us together.

    Just a thought.

  45. Reblogged this on Body Boot Camp and commented:
    This post is amazing. It definitely makes you think and appreciate life because it is a gift that gets taken away too soon for some.

  46. Jessie says:

    Don,
    I believe with all my heart this child whose short life and untimely death has spoken so deeply to you, is in a better place. A place where there is no violence or neglect or abuse or memory of such things. He’s in a place where there’s no evil, wickedness, death, pain or even darkness. I believe he will remember the officer (s) who helped him even though he won’t remember the pain. I believe there will always be evil in this world but there is hope. And I would like to say thank you to every police officer and firefighter. Thank you for your sacrifice and your heart. May God bless you and your families. You make a difference in this world and I am grateful.

  47. Amy says:

    God bless this officer. Yes he may not have saved a life but in my heart he did for trying when no other people tried. I’m about to cry because of this artical. I hope some day they find the killer and send him to jail. The kid doesn’t deserve to die. R.I.P hope his soul lives in peace.

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