My life has an ‘after’.

My world blew up when my son, David Glasser, a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty.   Many of my expectations and dreams for what my future was going to be were snatched away.   Now there is a ‘before’ and an ‘after’ – a major dividing line – in my life.

I talked about ‘before’ in my last blog.   I think it is ironic that thinking about ‘before’ is not without its struggles because it reminds me of all that is lost.  There used to be a light in my life that is has dimmed and a wholeness in my life that is now gone.

‘After’ is clearly the loser in the comparison of the two halves of my life.  I never expected to feel this level of grief or pain.  My father, mother and oldest brother have all passed away but I didn’t know until now that experiencing the death of a child could feel this horrible.

‘After’ is an extremely tough place to be.  It’s hard to move when my heart is shattered.  Everything seems to be ‘less’ than what it was ‘before’.  I have good times….until I’m reminded about all that is missing.

At the beginning of this journey, it felt like l was dropped into the middle of a deep dark jungle – extremely harsh, lots of traps, sometimes struggling just to take my next step, and not really wanting to move forward because Davey wasn’t going to be there.  The shock was so great and the grief was so heavy that it was a challenge to get up and face the mountain of pain that each day brought.

I am so grateful that God has been there to walk beside me each step, taking me through the jungle and helping me to start seeing the light again.  I have learned many life-changing lessons on this journey so far.  Here are a few:

Love really does change things.  Davey said “love you’ to everyone he cared about instead of ‘good-bye” and all of us who loved him were blessed by this when he was quickly gone.   So we all started following his role-model and it changed this very tough road we’re on.  Loving each other and saying it out loud helped us in ways that are hard to explain unless you’ve experienced it.  “Love you” was Davey’s final gift to us all.

I have an entirely different view now of the courage it takes to be a Police Officer.  They face unbelievable things every day and they do it because they care.  That kind of caring runs deep within the hearts of Police Officers, making them go out each day to face the worst our city and our neighborhoods have to offer.  And so many people don’t even appreciate it.

Obviously, I have taken a very personal journey into the sacrifice that Police Officers make for the people in their communities.  They regularly sacrifice other things in their lives in order to do their jobs well and be part of what’s going right in our city.  Some officers, like my son, sacrifice everything – that’s the risk they all take each day as they step out of their front door to do their job.

I also have a new understanding of the place that honor takes in the life of a Police Officer.  There is honor in always taking the high road – being the voice of reason and caring – when they are out on the streets of our city, working to keep all of us safe.  There is honor in the traditions and ceremonies that happen in the lives of our Police Officers.  There is honor in remembering our fallen heroes.

Love, courage, sacrifice and honor are woven together into the souls of Police Officers, making them able to stand for what is right even when they are face-to-face with evil.  They are special.  They are ‘the good guys’.

And I’m proud that Davey was and is one of them.

Miss you, Davey.


10 responses to “After”

  1. I am the mother in law of a slain officer. The before and after aspect is so spot on to the entire family of the slain officer. As I watch my two grandsons grow the after seems so overwhelming. It is so many things their father is missing.


    1. Thank you for reading this, Peggy. So sorry we share the pain of watching our two grandchildren grow up without their fathers. So unbelievably hard.💙💙


  2. Toni Townsend Avatar
    Toni Townsend

    Judy, I have thought a thousand times to reach out to you since thee death of Clayton. We are mommas who should never know this kind of pain. I’m not even sure there is a word for this kind of pain. I would love to meet you one day. I’m so so so sorry for your loss. I often visit your sons grave when I visit Clayton. Please feel free to reach out to me if your would like. I would love to meet you.
    With love Toni Townsend
    Mom of Officer Clayton Townsend


    1. I would love to meet you, too, Toni. We are sharing an extremely tough road. So sorry that you lost Clayton💙. I hate the fact that there are so many of us going through this. I got the chance to meet your daughter-in-Law and gave her a hug one Day we were both visiting the Cemetary. I go every Thursday morning I’m in town to clean his spot. I pray for your family and the family of Officer Rutherford who was just buried right next to Davey. There are several fallen officers buried in that area and I lift a prayer for each of us. So much pain, so much grief. I will message you – I would love to take you out to lunch.💙💙


  3. This article was shared to a page that I belong to. It is just how I feel. My Hero was murdered on 5/9/15 and I too, live that before and after life. He was 34 and my precious baby boy. I have finally gotten to where I have a few minutes of joy and then reality hits again. I was still in that deep fog when 6mos after he was murdered his 13yo daughter died of undiagnosed heart disease. We were extremely close. I can’t even remember her services. It seems that they left at the same time. No one understands until you have walked in our shoes and I certainly wouldn’t wish this life on anyone. Thanks for your writing.


    1. So sorry for your pain, Mary. My husband’s father died 2 weeks before my son was killed and the multiple losses at the same time have been extremely hard. I can’t even imagine the pain of losing two children. May you find light and joy in your life again💙💙


  4. Your blog is a wonderful tribute to David. So sorry for your loss.
    Alan Beck


  5. Love you Judy. I love reading every one of your testimonials and wish we could take the pain away that you face every day. I am truly very grateful for the police officers who work so hard to keep us safe. God bless every officer and first responder. Know I keep you all in Prayer for safety.


    1. Thank you for your prayers💙💙


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