Saturday, February 17, 2018

Meanwhile, in Chicago ...

I realize that the country is reeling from yet another school shooting. This one in Florida. 14 students were mowed down on Valentine's Day.

I'm aware of it, of course. But it hasn't touched this old heart of mine. Because I simply can't handle it right now.

Because on Tuesday, this happened here.

Look at how she's holding her daddy's hand.

Commander Paul Bauer was technically off duty but in uniform here in the Loop. Right in the center of the nation's third largest city. At 2:00 in the afternoon. He had just completed a training session of some sort when he heard a radio call. A suspect in a weekend shooting had been spotted around the The James R. Thompson Center.

AKA The State of Illinois Building. It's a government building, right in the middle of our theater district, surrounded by courthouses.

Commander Bauer approached the suspect. He took off. Bauer followed. Bauer was shot six times. In a stairwell in a government building. At 2:00 in the afternoon. In the nation's third largest city. The suspect was wearing body armor and had a Glock with an extra clip.

I pass The Thompson Center every day, twice a day. That government building is busy at 2:00 on a weekday afternoon. Those streets are busy at 2:00 on a weekday afternoon. And a Police Commander in full dress uniform got plugged in a stairwell.

As the old folks used to say, "What is this world coming to?"

Commander Bauer's wake was held Friday, which would have been his and wife Erin's 16th wedding anniversary. He also leaves behind the little girl in that photo, Grace. He was 53 and had been a cop for 28 years.


  1. I wish I had the answer. Police officers are being killed at a most alarming rate around here. All good men doing their jobs, responding to a call for help...often domestic violence situations. The public and the police here are reeling because of the outcome in a trial of a man who shot and killed an officer last year in just such a situation. The jury found him not guilty of killing the officer (how???). He was only found guilty of theft and receiving stolen property and given 7 years...which because of time served, he will serve little or no more time.
    The whole world is upside down.