Posted: Dec 27, 2011 9:46 PM by John Romero
Updated: Dec 28, 2011 2:21 AM
Dealing with an unexpected or tragic death is always a challenge. For that, Fremont County Jail Chaplain Ken Odom is always on call to help both victim's family members and police.
Last night when 5-year-old Ruth Joy Wilson accidentally shot herself was one of the worst scenes Odom has ever encountered. The little girl's death deeply shook many of the officers and investigators who responded. "I talked to a couple of them last night and I'm meeting with one of them this evening." explains Odom.
Chaplain Odom says dealing with a child's death can be especially difficult for first responders. "When you hit an event like that, often times it evokes personal connections if you will, to your own life. It brings up a lot of emotions for you." he says
In a situation like this, the Chaplain explains that it's tough to judge the mental state of a witness. "'s usually a pretty traumatic situation in which we'll find people are numb at that point in time." he says, " So you're interested in stability."
But through some talking, a lot of listening and a little prayer as well, the Chaplain says the long and difficult healing process can begin. "Any time we can provide hope to someone it's a chance to see a life stabilized if you will." he explains, "It's very rewarding."