Once the badge goes on, it never comes off, whether they can see it, or not. It fuses to the soul through adversity, fear, and adrenaline, and no one who has ever worn it with pride, integrity, and guts can ever sleep through the “call of the wild” that wafts through bedroom windows in the deep of the night.
When Cops Retire
When a good cop leaves the ‘job’ and retires to a better life, many are jealous, some are pleased, and yet others, who may have already retired, wonder. We wonder if he knows what he is leaving behind, because we already know. We know, for example, that after a lifetime of camaraderie that few experience, it will remain as a longing for those past times. We know that in the law enforcement life there is a fellowship which lasts long after the uniforms are hung up in the back of the closet. We know even if he throws them away, they will be on him with every step and breath that remains in his life. We also know how the very bearing of the man speaks of what he was and in his heart still is.
These are the burdens of the job. You will still look at people suspiciously, still see what others do not see or choose to ignore, and always will look at the rest of the law enforcement world with a respect for what they do; only grown in a lifetime of knowing. Never think for one moment you are escaping from that life. You are only escaping the ‘job’ and merely being allowed to leave ‘active’ duty.
“Don’t forget what we do, our sacrifice for others”
So what I wish for you is that whenever you ease into retirement, in your heart you never forget for one moment that “Blessed are the Peacemakers for they shall be called children of God”, and you are still a member of the greatest fraternity the world has ever known.
In closing, I would like to dedicate the above words to all of our Association members and to our fallen brothers who gave it their all and made the ultimate sacrifi ce. They ride beside us in silence, protecting us and keeping us from harm. At three in the morning they walk beside us, guiding us and watching our backs. They have given their all and now even in death walk beside us, watching us, protecting us from the evils of the world.