†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††By Dick Shear

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††††††††Los Angeles County Sheriff Circa (1975)



It was an average summer afternoon in Southern California. I was in my prime, looking good in my Black & White Patrol Car. Young, with plenty of muscles both on my body and under the hood of my Dodge. I can remember that feeling. I am the man. It just Sticks with me. I was alone en route from my station to my assigned district of East Compton. I never take the same route, because bad guys will snipe you. Even today I take different routes to the store out of habit. Some things just Stick with you. I was west bound on a street approaching an industrial area called Dominguez Hills. There was little to no traffic. Must have been a Sunday. I crossed the railroad tracks and low and behold, there sat a convertible sports car lying sideways in the middle of the street. Holy shit, someone was slumped over the steering wheel. Still no traffic. I call in my location, request assistance and leap from my car. This was a weird solo accident or party two fled the scene. My first instinct was to save lives because I was trained this way. Funny, it just Sticks with you. As I near the driver I can see this unconscious man seat belted in and bleeding profusely from a gaping forehead laceration. The blood has dripped out of the vehicle and puddle on the asphalt. Damn, thatís a lot of blood. The man is breathing which is a good sign. I immediately take my left hand (never my gun hand) and apply pressure to his head wound. The bleeding begins to slow, then stops. I hear sirens in the distance. My dispatcher is calling me frantically for an update of conditions. I canít leave him and go back to the car, or the wound will re-open. He feels cold, and begins to shiver. Shit, he is going into shock, where the hell is my back up and ambulance? I have been in numerous situations like this before. Every time itís like a blur, you just react. Funny how things Stick with you. Soon the whole world shows up. Paramedics are slicing his seat belt; firemen are opening the car like a can of tuna with the jaws of life. I see other Deputies making eye contact with me and assuring me everything is Code 4, OK. I am exhausted from loss of adrenalin and this Paramedic grabs my numb left hand. I re-focus. He is gently pulling my hand away from the victimís forehead. It is like glue. Funny, how it Sticks. I stand up and see I am splattered with blood. My left hand fingers are literally glued together. This stuff is really Sticky. Very soon, the victim was scooped up and whisked away in an ambulance. The Highway Patrol, who had traffic jurisdiction, took charge of the scene. My Deputy partners were off to fight crime. All that was left was for me to follow up for my simple log entry. I drive to Dominguez Valley Hospital and cleaned up. I need the name of the victim, so I enter the emergency room. It was pretty busy, with weekend warrior injuries and the like. A nurse directs me to the victimís bed. The curtain is partially open and the Paramedics are gathering information at his side. Another Paramedic taps me from behind. Hey deputy, he says. You did a fine job. You saved that manís life. Boy did I feel good. Funny how that Sticks with you. I approached the victimís bedside and see that he is conscious and speaking faintly with attendants. He looked like a mummy with bandages all over his head and body. I smile. The attending nurse says. This is Deputy Shear. Heís the one who found you trapped in the car. The victim looked me in the eyes and muttered ďPigĒ. Funny how things Stick with you. That was decades ago but I can remember it as if it was yesterday. Funny how some things STICK with you ;-)