An image taken at the funeral for a police officer who was gunned down by a ‘feckless coward’ has gone viral for incredibly heartbreaking reasons. It is a sobering reminder of the sacrifices our men and women in blue make every day they go to work.

Auburn Police Officer Ron Tarentino Jr. was shot and killed during a routine traffic stop last weekend. At his funeral, a photographer captured the image of a young boy, limp and sobbing in the arms of one of Tarentino’s fellow officers.

It’s a heartbreaking image when it stands on its own:

Capture

 

It becomes even more gut-wrenching when you hear this backstory – the boy is the son of the police officer in the same image, begging his father “Daddy, please don’t be a police officer anymore.”

If your eyes aren’t welling up with tears right now, you should check your pulse.

Via Worcester Mag:

What many have been wondering and asking is: “Who was the little boy?” and “Was he Tarentino’s son?”

Worcester Magazine has since learned the back story, and it is gut-wrenching.

No, the boy is not Tarentino’s son. According to Auburn Police Chief Andrew Sluckis, young Camden is the son of the police officer hugging in him in the photo, longtime Auburn Officer Keith Chipman.

The boy, Sluckis said, had just realized why he was there and that Tarentino had been killed. The boy and his father had been friends with Tarentino. The boy ran to his father, and as he hugged him, Camden pleaded with his father, “Daddy, please don’t be a police officer anymore.”

Tarentino was a 42-year-old officer that his chief referred to as a “cop’s cop.”

“Ron was born with blue blood,” Sluckis said. And his contagious laugh “always brightened our days and nights.”

But his life was cut short when a “feckless coward” ambushed him, shooting the officer five times in the back. The suspect was eventually killed in a shootout with police officers.

Tarentino left a wife and three young children behind.

One reader at The Blaze saw the photo and offered up these words of wisdom:

“As heartbreaking as that photo is,” he wrote, “when that youngster gets older, he will realize how brave his dad is and how important that job is.”

Amen to that.

Cross-posted at The Political Insider