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Our Brother is Gone

 Today is the day my brother was laid to rest. Today at the service, many of my other brothers were present. We gather, of late, much too often like this; these brothers of mine and I.

Today, the rows and rows of blue, of green and grey, the rows of brothers; each of us with a saddened heart, a lump in our throats, and no matter how hard we try to keep it from showing, each of us with tears in our eyes. Because today my brother was laid to rest, and today we feel once again the loss of someone of whom we could be proud, to whom we could relate, someone who cared, who understood, who loved and was loved. We shall miss our brother, but we, unlike many, will not let the passing of time cause us to forget him. We, unlike many, do not forget, because today when my brother was laid to rest, so also was a part of each of us.

Words can be written and songs can be sung, but there is no way that the deep personal sense of loss, the sincere caring, the ability to relate and truly feel the loss of a brother can accurately be expressed.

My brothers have come today from close and far. My brothers have come today because they want to be here, because they feel the same deep emotional loss that I feel. No fraternal order of men can feel more genuine concern or emotion for a brother and his family than these brothers of mine.

Today, when my brother was laid to rest, I was sad and yet proud. Sad and moved by the loss of a brother. Sad and feeling for his family and friends, but proud of him for his chosen career and proud to be a member of the Brotherhood of Police.

Tomorrow, there will be other brothers of mine laid to rest. Tomorrow, there will be other widows and children to mourn their loved one, and I and my brothers know that we also will be there to mourn or perhaps be mourned. This we can accept because it is the Lord who controls the destiny of my brother and me.

Written by Retired Montgomery County Police Captain Douglas L. McFee, Sr. for the funeral of Montgomery County Police Detective Lieutenant Donald A. Robertson (March 9, 1972).

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Police Officer III William D. Talbert
Sergeant Hector Ayala
Police Officer III Luke T. Hoffman
Captain Joseph Aloysius Mattingly, Jr.
Police Officer III James E. Walch
Police Officer III Mark Filer
Police Officer III Philip Carl Metz
Corporal John M. Frontczak
Captain James E. Daly, Jr.
Private William Patrick Conboy, Jr.
Detective Lieutenant Donald A. Robertson
Detective Lieutenant William H. Jessie
Private Robert L. McAllister
Private David G. Bisset
Patrolman James E. Shoemaker
Patrolman Webb S. Hersperger
Patrolman Joseph Asbury Case
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