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“Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look what they can do when they stick together.”
– Vesta M. Kelly  
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  Volume No. 15 Issue No. 12 December 2018  

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  Reflection on loss and hope
  By Mark Stoller

   Mark Stoller is a nine-year resident of Colorado. He and his wife, Andra, both U.S. Air Force veterans, moved to Falcon in 2007 and are now raising their three teenage daughters in Latigo. They enjoy their home on the prairie with plenty of room for their six adopted dogs, bagpipes & Celtic Festivals and beekeeping. Mark enjoys the privilege of his wife and daughters being his muse for topics, people to meet and places to investigate.
We made it through an emotional week and honored El Paso County Sheriff’s Deputy Micah Flick. He was the third Colorado law enforcement officer killed in the first 35 days of the year.
   
   The impact on our community is heart-rending because this death happened in Colorado Springs, and the Sheriff’s Office serves and protects us here in Falcon.
   
   Many are calling Deputy Flick’s death senseless. On the contrary, as his family stated, Micah Flick’s death made perfect sense. He had the heart of a warrior and lived to serve his community. He GAVE his life to protect others on his task force when their suspect pulled a weapon to evade capture.
   
   It’s been offered that God calls his best home early so their life and legacy will provide a measure for the rest of us to aspire to be better.
   
   Rachel Flick rightly lamented there is a “cultural epidemic of a lack of respect for law enforcement and authority.” The war on law enforcement has got to stop. Five additional law enforcement officers have lost their lives since Deputy Micah Flick. The latest two were ambushed in Westerville, Ohio, while investigating a 911 hang-up.
   
   Can we defeat this insanity by a massive show of support for the Blue Line? Will it take an “eye-for-eye” approach?
   
   Colorado is a death penalty state that will punish when “the defendant knowingly killed a law officer, elected officer, judicial officer or firefighter, while the person was engaged in the course of the performance of the person's duties or because of them.” While our state used to use hanging and the gas chamber, capital punishment is carried out by lethal injection. Perhaps it’s time for a cultural change with an overt government response of strength and immediate action.
   
   On a brighter topic, the Winter Olympics are in full swing and, for me, will always be a captivating event to behold. I grew up watching the Olympics with my parents. My mom is German, and the Olympics have been very important and popular across Europe.
   
   I am pleased my daughters have found the games equally interesting. It’s great to see them poised on the couch, reacting to great performances or commiserating when someone’s routine goes poorly.
   
   The president of the Olympic Committee went to great lengths to drive home the idea that the Olympics have the power to unify mankind. “You will inspire us all to live together in peace and harmony, despite all differences we have. You will inspire us by competing for the highest honor in the Olympic spirit of excellence, respect and fair play … . This is how you show that in sport we are all equal. This is how you show the unique power of sport to unite people.” Politics is left behind, and it is the heart and spirit of every athlete competing to bring us together.
   
   The Olympics is such a unique experience. It’s not like watching an entire season of your favorite sport. It’s the culmination of four years of sacrifice, determination and fortunes spent on coaches to secure a place on the national team and a moment in the spotlight. It is the pinnacle and crowning moment of achievement for so many from around the world.
   
   United in hope, we share a human experience watching the athletes give their very best in hopes for the gold medal.
  
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