Eric D. LeeChicago Police Department, Illinois
End of Watch: Sunday, August 19, 2001
Reflections for Police Officer Eric D. Lee
Officer Lee, I salute you. I lost my buddy, Officer Sean Laura, in the line of duty nearly four years ago and it broke my heart as I know your passing has done to your family, friends and co-workers. I desperately asked, "Why? Why my friend?" But through the tears and sadness, I realized that I was never more proud of my good, good friend. He died doing what he loved as I know you did. You could have looked the other way and chose not to give a damn, concerning yourself with only returning home safely to your wife and precious six-year-old daughter, but you didn't and it cost you your life. Making that choice is the bravest thing and the greatest act of courage a man or woman can hope to achieve in this life. My friend also made that choice as thousands of us do everyday. With every line-of-duty death, my heart becomes heavier and the greater my debt of honor becomes.
If I should someday fall while doing my job, I hope that my friends and family understand that as much as it may hurt them, know that I gave my life for what I believed was right, that I had no choice because doing nothing was inconceivable.
Again, I salute you, Officer Lee. Your watch is over, you can rest now and let those of us in blue who remain on the battlefield pick up the torch and carry on.
We stand on a line and say, "Nothing is going to hurt you. Not on my watch."
Detective Samuel Harris #528
Friend of Officer Sean Laura
Markham (IL) Police Department
Detective Samuel Harris #528
Markham (IL) Police Dept.
Just a short note to say that Eric was truly a good person, and will be missed. Lets just not forget what these men and women gave up to help keep the streets safe.
Chicago Police Dept
Rest in peace brother, you are in the arms of God
PO Michael A Baker
Kansas City Missouri PD
My deepest sympathy to the Lee family, and the men and women of the Chicago P.D. This incident truly is an example of the stark reality that each of us know... but face every day we strap on on uniforms and serve our communities. 'But by the grace of god...there go I".
May you have the love and support that is needed (and will be) to guide you all through this time of grieving. Brother Lee, you may be gone from this earth, but you are not forgotten.
God Bless the Lee family and the USA.
Sergeant Paul Honeman
Anchorage (AK) P.D.
It is not how you died that made you a hero Officer Lee, it is how you lived. You will never be forgotten because we honor our fallen.
I am a former part-time officer for the village of Dixmoor and it hurts to see ANYONE hurt or killed but, it more bothersome when its a police officer because as a child we were taught to respect the police and for no reason but to help others a young man was cut down in the prime of his life. Peace be unto you Officer Lee and may GOD have mercy upon your soul....
I was attending a meeting in Chicago the day Officer Lee was gunned down. The next morning, as I was standing on a dark street corner on my way to have breakfast, I noticed the headline in the newspaper rack. It struck me that Officer Lee's sacrifice, and the sacrifice of every other LEO in this nation allowed me to do something as simple as walk down the street in the early morning hours without fear. It is a shame that it takes something like this to drive that point home....To Officer Lee's family, friends, and fellow officers, and to every LEO who serves the citizen of America....THANK YOU and God Bless!
United States Federal Aviation Administration
To the Lee family we deeply express our grief for your loss and our hearts go out to you the family and friends closest to him. "Angel of God my guardian dear to whom his love commits me here ever this day be at my side to rule to guard to light and guide"
The Feeney Family
It is a sad day for us all when an officer is lost. My deepest condolences and prayers to your family, friends, and fellow officers. Rest in peace my brother, others will continue the watch.
Special Agent Andy Reeves
Diplomatic Security Service - Chicago Field Office
To his family, friends, fellow Officers, and fellow Marines:
So many people across the world hear this story and feel the loss. We may never have met, we may never meet. But there are millions of hearts going out to you and praying for you. Lean on their support when you need it. We will always be here.
Coconino County Detention Facility, Flagstaff, AZ
What an Out-pour from some many, that never met,or, knew Off.Lee.I too, never met or knew Officer Lee, yet, i was deeply saddened when i heard of the Great loss to the people of Chicago, and the Chicago police dept.Strength to your family,and may you rest in peace.You truly made the supreme sacrifice, while doing your duty. May GOD bless you, and Keep you brother, for we have lost to many like YOU..
Words are never enough at a time like this.
I worked the "other" side of the radio from Eric Lee for years when he was on midnights in Englewood.
You are in a better place now my friend ... please watch over your brothers and sisters still on the streets.
Karen Martin - Dispatcher
Chicago Police Department
We'll keep the watch 'till you call us home. Semper Fi Brother.
My deepest condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Officer Lee. Officers like him go out and do the job every day and only ask one thing; to safely go home to their loved ones at the end of the shift. This is a senseless act of violence committed by a coward who deserves nothing less than the final justice he passed on Officer Lee in the alley. So, to honor this hero, I submit the following;
"The Final Inspection"
By David Hunter
The officer stood and faced his God which must always come to pass.
He hoped his boots were shining as brightly as his badge.
"Step forward now, officer. How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek, to my church have you been true?"
The officer squared his shoulders and said, "No sir, I guess I ain't, because them who carry badges don't always act like saints. I had to work most Sundays and my language I know was rough, and sometimes, Sir, I've been violent
because the streets are awful tough. But I never took a single dime that was not mine to keep. Though I worked a bunch of extra jobs when the bills just got too steep. And I never passed a cry for help, though sometimes I shook with fear, and sometimes, Sir, forgive me, I've wept unmanly tears. I know I don't deserve a place among the gentle people that I served. They never wanted me around but when they were scared or hurt. If you had a place
for me, it don't have to be real grand. I never expected or had too much, but if you don't, I'll understand."
There was silence then, at the throne where the saints had often trod, as the officer waited patiently for the judgment of his God.
"Step forward now, officer, you've carried your burdens well. Come walk a beat on Heaven's streets--you've done your time in hell."
Officer Donna C. Hillier
Purdue University Calumet Police Department Hammond, IN
Officer Lee is a hero, and an inspiration to myself, and all police officers, to continue the fight for justice on behalf of all the citizens who can not do it for themselves.
Patrolman Jim Rattigan
Boston Police, Boston Mass
May God Bless you and your family Officer Eric Lee. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. You have given the ultimate sacrifice serving the citizens of Chicago and you will never be forgotten. Although we worked for two different agencies, there is truly an emptiness felt within as a result of your sacrifice and the sacrifice made by many other Law Enforcement Officers. May God rest your soul Brother. Rest in Peace. Sincerely E. Sledge
Investigator Eric A. Sledge
Illinois Attorney Generals Office
God bless you Officer Lee.
Officer Brian J. Gwilliam
You gave your life protecting others, doing your job, not shying away from your duty. May you have peace with God. May God bring peace and understanding to your family.
Rest in peace my brother in blue.
Rest In Peace. You will not be forgotten by those that are here to carry on your watch. God Bless You.
Petty Officer Robert Crumley
U.S. Coast Guard
My sincere condolences to the Lee family and the Officers of the Chicago, IL Police Department. I am greatly saddened by your loss, my thoughts and prayers are with you during this most difficult time. May God give you the strength and courage to get through this difficult time, and the years to come. Although our brotherhood has suffered a tremendous loss, we know that Eric is now safe in Gods arms guarding the gates of Heaven. God Bless you Eric, for all that you have been, and for all that you have meant, to the people whose lives you have touched..."
Sergeant Richard Lopez
United States Capitol Police
TO THE FAMILY AND CO-WORKERS OF OFFICER LEE:
OUR DEEPEST THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU AT THIS TIME, YOU WERE A TRUE HERO AND ARE IN A MUCH BETTER PLACE, PLEASE WATCH OVER YOUR FELLOW BROTHERS AND SISTERS AND KEEP US SAFE.
GONZALES P.D. (LOUISIANA)
REST IN PEACE BROTHER LEE! FROM ONE MARINE TO ANOTHER "IT'S BEEN REAL AND IT'S BEEN FUN, BUT IT SURE AIN'T BEEN REAL FUN"!
SEMPER FI "DEVIL DOG"
WHEN I HEARD OF THE SHOOTING I WAS SITTING IN A BAR PLAYING POOL AND DRINKING A BEER. ACROSS THE NEWS CAME THE HEADLINE, "OFFICER SHOT AND KILLED IN CHICAGO." I THEN PUT MY POOL STICK DOWN AND STOPPED THE DRINK THAT I WAS TAKING AND COULD NOT MOVE. MY EYES LOOKED UPON A PICTURE OF A MAN WHOM I HAD NEVER MET OR EVEN TALKED TO, BUT I FELT AS IF I KNEW HIM. THE MUSIC IN THE BACKGROUND WAS BLASTING MY NON-LAW ENFORCEMENT FRIENDS WERE BEGGING ME TO TAKE MY TURN AS I TOLD THEM THAT A POLICE OFFICER WAS SHOT IN CHICAGO. THEY ONLY SHOWED LIGHT INTEREST AND THEN BEGGED ME TO SHOOT. I THEN LOOKED AT THE GROUND AND CAME TO UNDERSTATND THAT ONLY LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS AND THEIR FAMILIES UNDERSTATND WHAT IT MEANS TO PUT ON THE UNIFORM. I THEN TOOK MY TURN MISSING THE SHOT, BUT I DID NOT CARE. I KNEW THAT THE MAN WHOM I HAD JUST HEARD THE NEWS OF WAS MORE IMPORTANT. I WANT OFFICER LEE'S FAMILY TO KNOW THAT THEY ARE NOT ALONE. THEY ARE A PART OF THE LAW ENFORCEMENT FAMILY AND WILL NEVER BE ALONE. OUR PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU.
SEMPER FI DD
DEPUTY RON VOSHELL
LUCAS COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
To the Family and friends of Officer Lee
First of all we would like to say Thank you to all officers who protect and serve. We have lost a loved one and know some of the pain you are experiencing. You have also have made a huge sacrifice, you have shared your loved one with others at a cost few will every know. We have Officer Lee's Wife and children in our prays and all of those he served with also. Please know that others care and will remember you all. Your path is going to be rough for a while but trust in God and those who support you. People really can be wonderful, I hope you will be able to see that throughout your journey. Our prayers are with you!
Colby & Angela Matteson
survivors Fort Wayne In, 8/5/2000
"I'm sorry" just doesn't convey my sorrow for your family. If there were magic words to make your pain go away I would say them in an instant but there are just no words. Just know people are there for you. Your husband, daddy, son, brother, friend, whoever he represented in your life may be gone but will never be forgotten. My children and I will pray that God will wrap his arms of grace around you and protect you all. Phil 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength".
Cathy Hill - Surviving Spouse
Harris County Sheriff's Department
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