When I was about 12 I had a newspaper route that covered the area between Madison Avenue and Walcott Street and Thompson Road and Epler Avenue. One day when I was finishing my route I noticed slow-moving police cars driving south on Madison with their lights flashing.
I had never encountered policemen operating their vehicles like that. It was sometime later that I found out that there had been a terrible wreck at Epler and Madison. Sgt. Hubert Roush, a state trooper had been in a collision with a delivery truck.
Because communications were not as sophisticated as they are today, we probably didn’t know much about the accident until the next day.
Once I had learned that Roush had been killed, I was impressed in how the other police were honoring their fellow officer as they were traveling to the accident site. I have never forgotten that day.
OK, back to the present time. ... There are still so many more questions that need to be answered about Aaron’s death.
I always wave at police officers and fire department personnel when they are not responding to an emergency. For several years I had a waving relationship with a gentleman who was an officer with the Beech Grove Fire Department. I would be driving my school bus, and he would be in his fire department automobile. It was a few years before I had an opportunity to speak with the gentleman. His name is Dennis Buckley, and now he is mayor of Beech Grove.
Over the past few years I have had the opportunity to get to know several folks who work for the city of Southport. My canine partner, Stuart, has served as “master of ceremonies” for the pet parades at several of Southport’s festivals.
We have been to the Southport Police Department, where so many people are stopping by to pay their respects to the Allan family. Stuart, being a therapy dog, has a special understanding of the feelings of the humans we are encountering. He has visited with several police personnel.
It was so great to hear the wonderful stories that folks were sharing about Aaron at his memorial at the department. We spoke with several of the members of the department, including the chief, the chaplain and officers as they were trying to hold things together while still doing their jobs.
I received a phone call from a good friend and former high school classmate of mine, Bob Rosebrock, who lives in Southern California. Bob said he saw a report about the death of Aaron, and he mentioned that the The New York Times had a piece about what was happening in Homecroft.
Another of my friends and former classmates, Sharon David, was a counselor at Decatur Central High School. She told me that she received calls from family and friends in different states that saw reports about the shooting.
Sharon remembered Aaron as a high schooler at Decatur Central, where he played football and survived a lightning strike during practice.
I hope everyone in Perry Township and all over central Indiana takes some time to honor and remember Aaron Allen and Indianapolis police Deputy Chief Jim Waters, who also died July 27 after being in a car crash July 23.