DENVER -- Shield 616 is one of the recipients of our “Support the Shield” campaign.
It is dedicated to equipping as many officers with advanced protective gear as quickly as possible. It has a new member who has a personal reason to be involved.
Chris Brown was a Colorado Springs police officer for seven years until he was forced to medically retired in January.
“I was injured in January of 2015," he said. "I was trying to arrest a suspect who decided he wanted to be combative we ended up having to duke it out a little bit.
"As a result of that, I damaged the ligaments in my right dominant hand. After three surgeries and running out of time, I was forced to medically retired. It's a very abrupt ending.
"You get a phone call, you literally have to stop work in that moment turn in your badge and gun and leave.”
He had a retirement party, where his family got together, which now means the world to him.
“We actually have great family photos from that day, the last real family photos of everyone together," Brown said. "They’re very special. I am thankful I have those family memories.”
His brother-in-law, El Paso County sheriff’s deputy Micah Flick, was killed in the line of duty four days later.
“Micah was always supportive, he was always a sounding board for me," Brown said. "He was always a voice of reason and a voice of wisdom in my life. I miss our conversations about the hard things in life. In last year, we became closer.”
Brown was considering job opportunities out of his hometown of Colorado Springs, but after Flick's death, he did not feel he could leave his family.
Then four days later, he got a call from Jake Skifsted, founder of Shield 616. He wanted Brown to join his team as a public relations representative.
“I literally broke down in tears because I was praying for a job where I could support law enforcement, share my faith, and tell Micah’s story and that’s exactly what I get to do now," Brown said. "It’s an absolute blessing to be part of Shield 616.”
Now he travels the region, getting officers fitted for their gear, recruiting supporters for the cause, and collecting donations to make it all possible.
Brown takes solace knowing that his brother-in-law would be proud of his new line of work.
“I know he’s watching every day and he’s so proud of the changes taking place because he gave his life," Brown said. "If God gave Micah the chance to come back, but everything would have to be undone, of all the things that have happened.
"He wouldn’t do it he wouldn’t come back. He wanted to be a force of change and through his death he is becoming a huge force of change. It’s just amazing to see the changes coming from him laying down his life.”