Life Lately: Tragedies

It’s been a depressing week in Charleston.

On Monday night, two police officers got shot in a stand off situation in West Ashley. Hundreds of police were involved, the stand off continued until 4:30 AM and roads were closed.

One of the officers, Joseph Matuskovic, died of the gunshot wound. The other officer was transported to MUSC, where he had surgery and should recover. A rescue worker, Larry Britton, was at the scene as a volunteer EMS worker and died of a heart attack. The suspect who shot the men was killed by officer fire.

It’s especially sad to read that the officer who passed away had a fiancee and young children, and the rescue worker was a longtime Charleston resident who did rescue work after Hurricane Hugo in 1989. I’m sure all of the public safety workers at the scene were mentally affected by the stress of Monday night’s standoff.


Wednesday, I went to a Pub Run at Bay Street Biergarden, and on my way home, I saw several police cars speeding down Morrison downtown, passing cars on the left, and you could tell something was wrong. When I got home and checked a news website, I learned that someone was shot in an apartment just a few blocks from the Biergarden- that’s where the officers were heading.

All of this was on my mind on Thursday, which was the anniversary of September 11, 2001. I was a high school junior in Algebra 3/Trigonometry class when I heard about the planes crashing into the World Trade Center. We watched TV coverage of the towers falling right before the quietest high school lunch period ever, and our high school marching band played mostly patriotic songs for the rest of the football season.


Reflecting on the tragedy here in Charleston this week and the tragic events 13 years ago, I’m thankful for those who put their lives in jeopardy every day for our safety. I know our public safety workers choose those careers, but choosing a career that puts your life in danger says a lot about a person’s character.

Compared to police officers, firefighters, EMS, and the military, many of us, myself included, have such low stress jobs. When I go to work, I don’t have to worry that I may not come home to my family that night. On Monday, Deputy Matuskovic went to a call about a drunken disturbance, a seemingly common police call that he’d probably responded to hundreds of times in his career, that took his life.

I hope to never forget the sacrifices made on September 11, 2001, or any time one of our public safety workers or military personnel gives a life for our protection.

This entry was posted in Charleston SC, Memories, Thankful, West Ashley and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Life Lately: Tragedies

  1. So sad and scary what some people are capable of.

  2. harveylisam says:

    Rough week, indeed. I’m sorry to hear of that tragedy.

  3. Pam says:

    What a horrible story about your city last week. The poor families of those affected. I agree, that we sometimes take our freedom for granted. One of my running friends just got deployed and left behind a small son and 9 month old daughter for 4 months. The heartache she must have every night not being able to put her children to bed. I admire and am so thankful for people like her.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      It is tough. The officer’s funeral is tomorrow so many roads in West Ashley will be closed.

      I can’t imagine how hard it is for military spouses when their spouses are deployed and they have kids at home. They have to play the role of a single parent but also worry about the deployed spouse facing danger =/.

  4. ahellams says:

    The scariest part here is Charleston is that so many of those shootings we don’t even hear about. Especially where we live, we know things happen because we live there but it never makes the news. Charleston lets you know what they want you to know or can’t manage to hide. It is so sad.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I have noticed this. A lot of times people are shot in the north area, and I guess because it’s “North Charleston”, it’s almost like shootings are expected and they do not get the coverage that a Downtown, West Ashley, or Mt. Pleasant crime would get.

  5. LilMysNinja says:

    Wow, I hadn’t heard of this. But then again, I haven’t spoken to my sis lately. Obviously she’s ok. I hate hearing that stuff like this happens so close to her. Glad you guys are ok.
    I always have an appreciation for law enforcement and all emergency responders. They put their lives on the line for others. Not everyone can do that. They deserve more respect that they get.

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