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In the line of duty

Published: Wednesday, June 25, 2014 9:49 a.m. CDT

“We are a one cop town.”

I have friends in public safety forces — our police. Since I have friends in the public safety, I am aware of the risk that they face every day. When I have time, I look on Internet for site “Officer Down Memorial Page."

Little River-Academy in Texas grabbed my attention. It is a town of about 1,600 people, 140 miles southwest of Dallas. Fifty-eight year old Chief Lee Dixon was shot and killed last Thursday.

Chief Lee Dixon was the only peace officer in the Little River-Academy. The mayor was quoted saying “we are a one cop town.”

Chief Dixon left his house that day to go to work to keep the peace in the little Texas town. He was friendly with the people of the town and the children in the town. Parent and volunteer fireman David Borders was in the coffee shop on Friday morning and told a reporter that the chief had given his little daughter a toy horse. He said the chief liked horses.

Chief Dixon’s wife Mary, who is in public safety also, came into the little town coffee shop. I would guess, this is a familiar coffee shop where the top of the white cups are little brown. She was greeted with hugs and tears in the shop. She explained that Bell County Sheriff’s Department was helping her in making the arrangements for her husband services.

In this “one cop town," Chief Dixon went to work to enforce safety on Thursday.

Every day, men and women leave their homes in Osceola, Clarke County and Iowa to provide safety.

Probably most days, there is call about some runaway dog or puppies dumped out on a county road. Maybe someone has a car accident and the officer is needed. Or, maybe someone has fallen down the stairs and the officer comes to give aid until the ambulance arrives. Of course, there is always paperwork to be completed.

Most days the officer keeps peace and protects the community. But, then one day it happens, as it did for Chief Dixon. The unexpected happens that the officer has been trained for, but things go wrong.

Everyone in public safety knows it can happen, but they do their job for the peace and the welfare of our communities. As we come toward July 4, there will be parades on our streets and celebrations. For public safety, it will be a day to slow down cars and block streets and help people have a safe time.

Let’s give the public safety officer a smile and a thank you for their dedication and commitment. They never know when it will be “that day when things go wrong." I hope you will join me in saluting them for their dedication and commitment.

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