It’s been hard to write this, I get choked up a lot. I didn’t actually know Officer Garrett Swasey, but as a member of the UCCS campus community his loss has affected me. On Black Friday, I was out getting shots at the mall for my final project, and there turned out to be a lot less people there than I would have expected; I have no idea why. I didn’t find out about the shooting at Planned Parenthood until 4:30 or so that night when I got home. My roommate works at Panera and drove over to the blockade to serve hot chocolate to the police. The next day I attended the press conference in Gallogly and the candlelight vigil outside the University Center. In keeping with my ongoing projects, these pictures are inspired by William Klein.
I didn’t attend the actual funeral last Friday, but was on campus for the motorcade’s drive-by on Austin Bluffs Pkwy, just me, a few friends, and half the university. In typical Colorado fashion, the motorcade was behind schedule by about an hour and a half, but we stuck around. Many cars passing by honked in support and I am grateful to them. The sun had already gone behind the mountains when the time finally came, and we surged across the road to the center island forming two long lines, silent, solemn, and dignified. The procession itself lasted about an hour, so many police vehicles participated, and from all around the country, I’m told; many were sheriffs’ offices from counties I didn’t recognize. There was a great showing from the police forces of Denver and its suburbs, and I did notice vehicles from: police departments of Laramie, WY, Albuquerque, NM, and the University of Wisconsin, as well as: the CO State Highway Patrol, US Mint, Homeland Security, and BATF.
Probably the most moving thing I’ve seen is pictures and video taken from inside the police cars showing just how many people came out to show their support. I was a participant, I didn’t move much, and my pictures don’t do justice to the scale, but I’m honored to have been there, to give an insider’s perspective on national headlines. A heartfelt thanks to all who serve and protect.
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 (KJV)