My last career move, I was assigned to the Homicide Unit. What I remember most is the faces of the people involved in the crime or the victim that stood before us, and nearly every call was a nightmare at least to the people who called for help. Death was present almost every day, sometimes several and I carry scars in my head that will be buried with me. At times, everyone lives in their own hell but as a police officer, not only do you live in you'rs but theirs too. But the faces...
Working with dogs and puppy mills for the last 20 years, you will never forget the face of the dog in the cages that had no hope. To walk into a death row shelter and rescue one dog, whereas 100 dogs are left behind is heartbreaking. You try not to look into the eyes and see the faces of the dogs left behind. Leaving with the dog you saved in your arms crying into its fur as you walked that long corridor is common. "You're safe now" as you know, the others aren't.
The other faces I see are the ones where they are safe, and you can actually see them smile. When they are prepared for their new home with shots, surgeries, and love, their life is transformed right in front of you, but your mind always goes back to the faces of the ones you left and the guilt you carry.
I could have got more out. I could have got more. I don't know. If I'd just... I could have got more.
Just this past Saturday, a little girl saw the face of death several months ago. She was hit by a car, left at a Veterinarian office to die when the owner couldn't pay. Something, maybe fate, or whatever you believe in came into play. After two significant surgeries where she nearly touched the hand of death but didn't, she was saved by many people who came together and put a foot forward and took a step. To us, it may be a small step, but to her, it's a giant step. Saturday, she went to her fosters home and will be loved and coddled, for the rest of her life, she deserves it, but then they all do don't they. Unfortunately, they all don't get that chance, even when you try so hard, it's devastating, and I find little soleus in knowing we tried.
Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
Put out my paw and touched the face of God.
John Gillespie Magee, Jr (edited)
Today I am reminded of the faces again. I see them every day in my mind when they pop in and out of my conscious. I'm reminded why so many give so much whether it's your time or donations but know the face you bring me is pleasing to my heart and drowns out the ones I can't forget, I wish I could have got more...
Every year Clancy's Dream has saved more dogs that the year before. Just in the last 6 weeks, we have rescues more dogs than in our first year. Thank you for making smiles... Ken