When Blood and Water Meet…

   

Almost everyone knows the saying, “blood is thicker than water”. In many cases, this is true. Blood, representative of our familial ties, while water represents those close friends and extended family. Some might believe that there is no bond stronger than that of blood family and that is often true. However, there are instances where this statement can be challenged.

As I’m watching the television coverage of the funeral service of the latest ‘fallen officer’, Daryl Pierson, in the city of Rochester New York, it has become evident that ‘water’ is not only thick and dense, but runs deep, far and wide. I am thoroughly amazed, impressed and touched at the amount of support, presence, and solidarity being displayed at his funeral service, with the attendance of thousands of police officers from all over the country that have come to this city to pay their last respects to Officer Pierson, who lost his life last Wednesday night September 3, 2014 during a foot chase of a wanted parolee.

I recall sitting on my bed last Wednesday night when at least 3 to 4 vehicles came flying past my house. I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed, but there’s a sound that law enforcement vehicles make when they’re traveling at top speeds. It’s as almost as if the vehicles are riding on top of the air; an unmistakeable sound that makes me privy to police presence every time one passes through my neighborhood at break-neck speeds. I wondered what could have possibly happened, but didn’t give it a whole lot of thought as it is a sound I’ve heard on many occasions. About 30 minutes later, a breaking news flash burst across my t.v. screen. The report said that both an officer and a suspect had been wounded during a traffic stop and that both had been taken to area hospitals. I was immediately relieved that no one had died, at least at that point. I said a little prayer for both. Somewhere around 11:00p.m. I believe, it was then reported on the evening news that Officer Pierson had succumbed to his injuries. I was stricken with so much sadness and heart-wrenching emotion at this sobering development. An officer had lost his life in the line of duty and there was no reversing the outcome, no turning back. How I wished I could rewind back to hours before those police cars had come riding like the wind past my house.

As a city, we could take on the view that too much is being made out of this incident because an officer lost his life. Or, we could show some human compassion and be respectful of the loss of life, as I would hope we would be for any other, regardless of their ‘walk of life’. I was proud to see a few interviews where Rochester residents seemed to agree that whether an officer of the law or not, a person died. Officer Darryl Pierson was a human being, a husband, a father, a son, a brother, an officer of the law. He even served a year in the war in Afghanistan. I can’t help but notice the cruel twist of fate that allowed him to survive the danger of a seemingly never-ending war, only to return to his home in Rochester New York, and lose his life. Officer Pierson received a hero’s send-off; twenty one gun salute and all. There were even fully-attired, kilt-wearing, bagpipe playing attendees. I have much admiration for Officer Pierson’s widow, Amy Pierson, who displayed such control and poise in light of an event that has changed her life forever. My prayers go out to the Pierson family and all those related, near and far, as blood and water meet, coming together to make one hugely supportive and impressive family. Rest in peace Officer Pierson.

By Sylvia Porter-Hall

Images: Free Google images

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