This past week we have been thinking so much about those who have given their lives for others. Last Sunday in Hawaii two police officers were shot and killed while helping a woman who'd been stabbed. These two officers are absolutely heroes. They left for work that morning just like they had hundreds of other days. Their families were fully expecting them to come home...just like they had hundreds of other days. Tragically they responded to a call of a lady who'd been stabbed. Officer Tiffany Enriquez and other officers found the lady and as she was being transported to the hospital they approached the home, but were met with shots fired. She was hit. Officer Kaulike Kalama responded with a second group of officers and as that group approached the home he too was hit.
Both officers were wearing ballistics vests and were rushed to the hospital, but the wounds were too great. The loss of life is awful and heartbreaking, but the way they lived their lives and their willingness to put their personal safety aside is what we are focusing on. They had each saved countless lives in their years of service.
Officer Enriquez served in the Military and had been with Honolulu PD for the past 7 years. She loved her boyfriend, 3 daughters, and 2 year old granddaughter fiercely and they will miss her so much. Her boyfriend (Jonathan Danial Baba-a fellow LEO) said "Tiff was also the most hardworking, amazing, and fiercest Officer that I have ever known. My heart is shattered as she was my love, my rock, and my strength. I am devastated as she has paid the ultimate sacrifice of any Law Enforcement Officer, but take solace in the fact that she died doing what she loved, Serving and Protecting the people of Honolulu" that says so much about her. Her celebration of life will be this Thursday with a final salute after that at the Honolulu police station.
Officer Kalama had served for 9 years with Honolulu PD and took great pride in being one of Honolulu's finest. He was frequently picking up extra shifts to help cover expenses, but ultimately his friends and family said "being involved in that community and serving and city and county of Honolulu was just who he was."
He was known as a definite family man and a quiet hero, serving and helping wherever he could. Officer Kalama will be honored with a candlelight vigil tomorrow night.
Our men and women in blue truly put it all on the line every single shift and we want to make sure they does not go unnoticed. We truly never know how things will turn out and it is heartbreaking writing about these two fine officers and thinking of all the things they will miss, but what sticks out the most is how much they loved their work. They loved serving their community, they loved keeping others safe, and they took pride in making a difference. That mindset is something we hear so much from our law enforcement officers...for most it is not about them or about the power, but about a life of serving and helping. They don't just talk about helping, they actually take action and do it day in and day out. On shift or off they are ready to help.
How will we give that same dedication? How will we choose to show up? Will we just talk like so many do? Or will we take action to let them know their service and sacrifices do not go unnoticed? For us (Ryan and I and our kids) it is simply not a choice any more. We will reach out, we'll wear our shirt with a blue line because it symbolizes that we stand with them. We'll deliver giveback shirts so they have something tangible to hold on to when it seems like all they hear is opposition. Send us a message and let us know what it is you will do...because every little bit matters and makes a difference!
Ryan and Amanda