In light of the events one week ago today I wanted to take a moment to talk about this wonderful place we call home, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The senseless attack and murder of our policeman and deputies have brought this commuity together, instead of tearing it apart. I had just sold a home in the subdivision, and across the street, from police office Matthew Gerald. The first memorial service to him was on his street, his life celebrated by his neighbors. In this modest neighborhood neighbors gathered together to surround his family with love and support.
The location where the ambush occurred has become a shrine to the fallen heroes with flowers and memorials piling up. I stopped by today and met 3 formally dressed Idaho State Police. People were coming up to them, hugging them, and speaking with them. I had hoped to meet a chaplin from New Jersey that had been there all week to meet and pray with people. Unfortunately, he was not there today.
The outpouring of love for our fallen heroes can be seen as each funeral procession proceeds down the main highways lined with thousands of mourners - some who stood in the heat and then the pouring rain for hours waiting for the procession to come by so they could honor our fallen protectors. Hundreds of officers from across the United States also came to pay their respects.
You would think this was a small town as this is what would have happened in my home town of Ozark, AR - population 3500. But this is a huge city and people all have the same common goal - to show the solidarity of our city, to back our first responders. We bury one more tomorrow and start the healing process. The community has come together to financially support the families as well as the one officer we have who is still struggling for his life. What a lovely show of support. You should see the streets lined in blue, LSU Stadium lit in blue, etc.