The headline read, “Cop-Shooting Fugitive Dies in Gun Battle with State Police and FBI”.
The incident itself was all too familiar — a disturbed guy with a lengthy criminal record shoots and wounds a small-town police officer following a traffic stop, then flees into a nearby forest. He is armed and desperate.
He breaks into a church, where he steals donation money, medical supplies, and food. He is then spotted with an assault rifle and a shoulder belt of ammunition, running through the church cemetery toward an abandoned house.
Never a good situation.
An FBI SWAT team and the State Police track him there and in the ensuing confrontation, an agent is wounded and the subject is killed. The automatic rifle is found next to the gunman’s lifeless body, suggesting he was bent on more violence had he not been stopped.
This man was clearly troubled and homicidal, arguably even suicidal, to shoot a police officer and then engage in an armed standoff with law enforcement. He represented a danger to himself and everyone around him until he was finally brought down in a hail of bullets.
Do you ever feel that way? I find myself saying, “What is WRONG with people?” when I’m frustrated for any of a variety of reasons.
Did they really think cutting me off in traffic would gain them an advantage of more than one car length?
Can they seriously not hear how they just interrupted to turn the conversation back to themselves . . . again?
Don’t they get it that the promises of that politician are empty?
As if I’ve got it together and they don’t.
My husband’s uncle is a great lover of jigsaw puzzles — the 1,000 piece, really challenging ones that, as we used to say in the South, “could make a preacher cuss”. He can spend hours focused on one of these things, not giving up until he finishes it, which by the way, he always does. And then he starts another. He’s amazing.
This post was originally published for Mother’s Day 2014. It is as relevant now as it ever was, so I am reposting it this year in honor of my sweet Mama. To those of you who never knew her, you missed a real lady.
Recently, I was handed a red carnation as an acknowledgement of my participation in a community event. Looking at it, I was reminded of a tradition in many churches when I was growing up.