Saturday, November 14, 2015

Good News: Somerville police officer reaches out after an emotional traffic stop

Too often the news only covers negative stories about police when they put their lives on the line for us every day. They're the ones who come if we get robbed, beaten, cheated, are in a car accident, get hurt, are scared, in a fire, etc. It's a crappy job, but they do it to help people. They deserve thanks and respect. (and for the idiots who always defy police officers- When a police officer asks you to do something- DO IT. Don't be an ass and be defiant. It won't end well for you).
   On a good note, the following story appeared in the Boston Globe newspaper on November 6th  about a good deed from a police officer that got some attention. It's a great story.

‘This could be me’: A Somerville police officer reaches out after an emotional traffic stop

Officer Catataoand her son


A traffic stop in Somerville on Wednesday led to an unexpected result—flowers instead of a ticket.
It began when Somerville Police Officer Ashley Catatao was running radar on Alewife Brook Parkway, and pulled over a car that was going 40 mph in a 30-mph zone.
Catatao asked the driver, Robin Sutherland, if she knew why she was being pulled over.
“She said, ‘Was I going fast?’” recounted Catatao.
Sutherland told Catatao that she thought the last time she was pulled over for speeding was in 1985, and her precise recall made the officer laugh.
Catatao told the woman that as long as she had a good driver’s history, she’d just give her a warning.
The officer's note that came with flowers to Robin
Catatao walked back to her cruiser to fill out the written warning. When she returned, she was surprised to see Sutherland crying.
“I was like, ‘Why are you crying? It’s just a warning,’” Catatao said. “She said, ‘No, it’s not that. This morning I got a call saying I had to put my mom in hospice. And even though she’s 90 years old, you’re never ready to say goodbye to a parent.’”
Catatao said she was on the verge of crying herself, hearing Sutherland’s story. But she “kept it together.”
“I told her, ‘It’s going to be OK, you have to keep going. Just take it easy,’” Catatao said.
Sutherland was soon on her way, but Catatao found herself continuing to think about the encounter. She realized she’d like to do something nice for the stranger she’d just pulled over.
“I felt bad because it’s not like I could have sat there and talked with her,” Catatao said. “It’s not like I could have hugged her. She was on her way to work, and I was working.”
The Somerville officer found a local florist near Sutherland’s home and put in an online order that included a personal message, signed simply, “Officer who pulled you over this morning.”
She said she’s surprised at how much media attention her act of kindness has attracted.
“I thought if anything she would call to say thank you, send an email to the department, that was it,” she said. “I didn’t expect for this to happen.”
Catatao said she’s had previous experiences where she’s wanted to reach out to people she’s encountered on the job. She said there are always interactions that stick with you, but officers don’t always get the chance to follow up with people after responding to calls.
Robin gets the officer's flowers
“Sometimes I do want to, but I get hung up on it because I’m like, ‘Will they think it’s weird? Would it be inappropriate?’ And then just sometimes you don’t get a chance to do it,” she said.
But Sutherland’s situation struck Catatao personally—she’s very close to her mother, and she’s a mother herself.
“I have my son every single day and everything I do, I do for him,” she said. “So to realize that someday I could lose my mother who has done so much for me, and to think about my son losing me someday—god forbid it’s from the job—I’m hoping it’s someday when I’m really old and he’s prepared for it. But it just moved me to think, ‘This could be me.’ Where I have to say goodbye to my mom, or my son has to say goodbye to me.”
Catatao said she hasn’t seen the flowers herself since she placed the order online, but she spoke to Sutherland on the phone on Thursday.
“She’s a really nice woman and I wish her and her family the best,” she said. “I know they’re going through a really difficult time right now, but i just wanted to thank her for bringing such positive attention to what we do. This is something we do here all the time, you just don’t hear about it.”

Gift/Memorial Suggestions

Several of our friends have lost loved ones (human and pets) and we found that one of the best ways to honor their memory is to give to an animal charity.
What better way to recognize a life of love, than by giving another life a chance for love?
We donate to many animal rescues, but because we volunteer with
DC Weimaraner Rescue and Coast-to-Coast Dachshund Rescue, those are our 2 favorites.
Consider giving the chance of life to a dog or cat.

About us

We're two married guys who enjoy the simple things in life, especially our dogs. We volunteer for dog rescues, enjoy splitting dinners, exercising, blogging, helping friends and neighbors, ghost investigations, coffee and tea, Tudor history, weather, superheroes, comic books, mystery novels, traveling, 70s and 80s music, classic country, piano, gardening, writing books on ghosts and spirits, architecture, keeping a clean house, cooking simply, and keeping in shape. You'll find tidbits of all of these things on this blog and more.

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!

Tom and Rob Thinking Hard!
Wondering what home project to do next