This above meme tragically doesn’t mean anything in relation to what I’m writing.
Because it wasn’t a local man who was 72 years old, and decided to drive drunk last night, who lost his car or his license.
He nearly lost his life and is in critical condition at a local hospital.
Horrifically though, he killed a 30 year old female Minneapolis 911 operator who died tragically in that accident last night, on her way to work.
I’m heartbroken for the family, friends and co-workers of this amazing young woman.
I’m heartbroken as a citizen of Downtown Minneapolis, who reveres all of our first responders, and feels safer because of them, whether they be 911 operators, police officers, fire department and our local HCMC EMS staff who are headquartered 2-4 blocks away from where I live.
I’m not saying the following, which I’ve said before, and after my last blog, the last thing I really wanted to be doing is writing another serious blog, given my disability sets and feeling so helpless about such tragic awful loss of life, in the last 2 weeks.
But in hopes that another person will NOT make the same mistake as that 72 year old man who drove impaired, last night, I will try.
As I thank our first responders, in person, everytime I see them, since moving to Downtown Minneapolis. I’ve thanked when I’ve had to call 911.
I’ve tried to thank them in past blogs and failed to do so because of my disability sets of not being concise, when trying to show being beyond grateful for their service, it was beyond readable.
I remember one instance, when calling 911, on July 4th in 2016, due to the PTSD triggers that I have, I thought because of being anxiety prone and having major panic attacks, due to fireworks that are set off in my neighborhood (I’m talking about people setting off fireworks not the professional display that occurs a mile away) , the year before, because it’s hard to distinguish I was so on edge, the next year, that I mistakenly thought there was a fire, across the street.
It wasn’t a delusion, it was a mistake on how light fell on a windy day, from where I could see, in my apartment window, in the parking lot across the street, from being anxiety prone and when the 911 operator called me back, I realized what happened , that there was no fire and she made me feel better, because I felt awful, wasting resources when there wasn’t a true emergency, which I would any day, but especially on a day like Independence Day that’s super busy for first responders.
She kindly and patiently said, “we’d rather given the circumstances operate on a false alarm than not to not have the ability to help”, if there was a true emergency but it went unreported and it wasn’t so far fetched, and that I should feel good about caring about other’s people safety, as well as acknowledging and not minimizing my severe anxiety as it’s hard to tell when you can hear neighbors setting off loud fireworks, but cannot see them, if that’s what’s occuring or if it’s gunfire.
As such as in my case, where I didn’t feel safe enough, rational or not, to go outside and check.
So I’m writing this. I’m hoping that anyone doesn’t think that their actions, whether they get behind the wheel, drunk, looking at a text, looking at social media, being mad about something and driving recklessly, doesn’t have the potential to kill an innocent person.
BECAUSE IT DOES KILL INNOCENT PEOPLE.
And in this case, locally, we are mourning that we are NOW short one life saving hero, who didn’t have to die on her way to work, which she was an amazing first responder, because someone got behind the wheel when they had NO right to do that.
So hopefully anyone will think twice, before getting beyond the wheel impaired, for ANY reason, so this doesn’t happen again.
I’m so sorry for the loss of this lovely young heroic woman, for her, for her family and friends, co-workers and the City of Minneapolis.
Editorial Note: I updated this blog, 3 hours, after I originally published, because at the time, that I heard more details about this tragedy, while the identity of the 911 operator had been released, I hadn’t seen any of the details released about the identity of the drunk driver, who was a retired pastor.
I feel just as strong in my sentiment that people should not drive impaired, it shows that even people who do such good in the world, make horrific mistakes in judgement, that can tragically end a life of not just themselves, but an innocent other.
I’m trying to be as respectful as possible, given all the circumstances, in hopes that this doesn’t ever happen again. Or that it would possibly save one life, but I couldn’t ever do the greater good that both the 911 operator did in her life, as well as sadly from what is being reported about the retired pastor and felt I needed to be sensitive, as I could, given this particular local devastating tragedy.