Goshen News, Goshen, IN

November 24, 2013

Being there for each other

Goshen News

---- — Generally speaking, putting out a daily newspaper is about looking ahead. The concerns tend toward the immediate — What’s going in the next edition? What about the one after that?

Sometimes, though, it’s nice to take a breather and look back. That’s especially true when a news item has the effect of raising one’s spirits.

Join us, if you’ve got the time, in re-reading part of Friday’s Page A3. We think you’ll be glad you did.

THE PHOTO AT THE the top of the page pretty much tells the story. Goshen Police Department Ptl. Phil Rissot is giving a hug to a colleague, Ptl. Jose Diaz. Rissot appears to be in good spirits. He had 21 valid reasons.

That’s the number of Rissot’s fellow GPD officers who showed up at Doug’s Sports Cut Thursday to have their heads shaved. They weren’t making a fashion statement.

RISSOT HAS BEEN diagnosed with A.L.L. leukemia, and has been undergoing treatment at the Simon Cancer Center in Indianapolis. On Thursday, his follow officers had their locks shorn in a show of support.

“Like we say, we’re a family and (Rissot’s) going beyond his comfort zone, something we’ll never ever understand, and for us this is something minor that we can (do to) show we’re going out of our comfort zone to get rid of our hair,” GPD Detective Nick McCloughen said at Doug’s Sports Cut. “People are going to ask us why we did it and it’s just going to spread the information about Phil and why we did it for him.”

THINK YOU’VE GOT problems? Think of Phil Rissot and the battle he has ahead of him. Consider, too, the opportunities all of us have to make life just a little bit better and more bearable for the people around us.

A bunch of newly bald police officers won’t cure cancer. Still, they’re supporting a colleague and friend, and that’s a lesson and a message that resonates far beyond the confines of a Goshen barber shop.

EVERYONE YOU KNOW is going through a struggle, big or small. And whatever you can provide — a kind word, a listening ear, shaving your head — likely won’t make that problem disappear. But it can help. Every little bit helps.

Thanks for a fine example, members of the Goshen Police Department.