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We should thank our local police for the dangerous work they perform

Published: Friday, Sept. 6, 2013 12:00 p.m. CST

Law enforcement is dangerous work, even on the easiest of days.

Unfortunately, we take that fact for granted all too often. Tragically, it takes something like this past week's loss of Newton Police Lt. Pat Richardson to remind us just how important our local law enforcement is to our communities.

First, we would like to thank Richardson and his family for their service to Newton. We understand it takes a family commitment to answer the call to "protect and serve," and we greatly appreciate all they have done.

We mourn with them the loss of a great civil servant, a great man. As evidenced by yesterday's service at Community Heights Alliance, it is clear he impacted the lives of many in a very positive way.

Second, we would like to thank those who worked alongside Richardson for their service. Without their service, it is hard to imagine Newton would be the great place to live and raise a family that it is.

We mourn with them the loss of a leader, a big brother. Yesterday's service was a great indication of the positive influence he had on the lives of the officers of the Newton Police Department.

FInally, we would like to remind the community to use this as an opportunity to look at its own actions. Do we contribute to the danger of the job? Could we drive safer? Could we be more caring and considerate of others? Could we turn away from the painful influence of drugs and alcohol?

Police work will always be inherently dangerous, and it will always be the job of a few brave men and women to stand in harm's way to protect the rest of us. But never let us forget our responsibility to them.

We can all do our part to make their jobs a little less dangerous.