I wanted to keep this to myself but now that things are finally starting to happen, I’m so damn excited to finally share! Being the widow of a murdered officer has pushed me to a new place in life but now I’m ready to push myself to finish plans and goals I thought would never happen.
For those that knew us before our lives changed know how much Charlie and I loved taking the kids hiking in TN and NC every year. We LOVED those trips and Charlie couldn’t get enough of the fall leaves, light snow, and amazing summers there. Charlie was three years from retiring when he was killed. He worked as much over time as he could to make sure his pension would be stable enough to support us, maintain our health insurance, and to buy a small piece of land with a little cabin so we had a place to stay where he absolutely loved to be. It was his dream and he worked so hard for it, but life had different plans for us.
When Charlie was killed, our plans and future died too…at least I thought they did. This year, I took the FIRST step to finish the plans he made. I have finally accepted that it's okay to experience the things he loved. It's okay to be in places he will no longer be. It's okay to be happy and enjoy the life I have left without him here. It's okay to move forward and finish the things he dreamed of. It's finally OKAY!
Signing a deed alone for something he worked so hard for made me feel guilty and proud, all at the same time. With Charlie’s plans and my drive to give back, this place will be dedicated to the blue family that has never left my side to use as their home as well. My goal is to do this for my LEO family.
The land is currently being cleared and I’m hoping to start building this spring. Doing it all myself financially is scary but I don’t want to look back and wish I did. I’ve figured things out this far so I’m not going to let fear hold me back. I want this as much as Charlie did and I owe it to him to do my best to make it happen.
To my blue family, widow sisters and friends, I hope this will be a place we can all share to get away and remember those we have lost and those still blessed enough to be here. I don’t thank God enough for the people He’s sent our way and for all the things He’s done for us. I’ll never know why things happened this way but I have learned to find the good and it’s all I focus on. I don’t take anything for granted and I appreciate everything God has shown me since that day. Through death and all the unbearable nights we’ve had, we’ve learned to use the bad to make as much good as possible. I’m thankful I’ve learned that about death.
Charlie, I’m so incredibly sorry you never had the chance to retire and grow old with us. I’m sorry you were robbed of all the good things you worked so hard for. I’m sorry you’ll never see the fall leaves and snow that you loved so much. I’m sorry you will never see the kids walk the property like you would. It kills my heart to know you worked so hard for this and you will NEVER experience it. But I promise you this, I will do everything I can to make this happen to honor you and your sacrifice.
Every time I see this beautiful place, I think of you and all the good things you did in your life. I think about the things you have taught us. I think about the happy person you were and how much you are missed. I think about how happy you would be to stand where so many memories will be made. But your memory and spirit will always be the center of this place and I hope it makes you proud.
I promise to share your name and the incredible legacy you left behind. I promise that the guests that come to visit this place will know all about you and your sacrifice. I promise this will be an amazing place, which is why I want it to be called “Charlie K’s Kabin.”
When I promised to never let your name die, I meant it. I just wish I didn’t have to. I'll always love the life we had and I'm so grateful for everything you taught me. I'm incredibly grateful for the way you treated me and the way you loved our babies.
It has been so stressful doing this but, this cabin will be amazing, Charlie!