“The suicides stick with me the most, here are a few:
“First one was less than a year on, get a call from a female who sounded numb, said she came home from work and found her fiance hanging from the rafters. She kept asking me ‘What do I do now?’ I had no answer for her, just kept repeating that I would stay on the line with her until units showed up.
“Another one, I got a call from a female who said she just found her friend’s boyfriend hanging from the tree out back, and that her friend’s kids were sleeping inside and could we please hurry so they don’t have to see him in the backyard.
“Another one, I get a call from a hysterical man (found that out a little bit into the call) who was yelling that his adult sister (in her 40s, I think) just shot herself in the head in front of their extended family. The reason I bring up his sex is that he sounded like a female and I kept telling calling him ma’am when asking for him to take a breath so that I could get the needed info. Yes, I know some dispatchers won’t say sir/ma’am but that is how I was brought up. When he yelled that he was a man, I just switched to sir and kept trying to calm him down to get the info I needed.
“One that was not a suicide but an OD that always sticks with me as well. Get a call, no one is answering me, hear an older female voice close by crying and saying ‘please don’t leave me, please don’t leave me’ and sounds of the phone brushing up against fabric. Then the line disconnects. First thought, was this was some sort of DV call. I call back and immediately get the female on the line who said she found her son (adult) dead from a heroin OD.”