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'Something everyone should read': Widow of slain LEO writes emotional note

Elizabeth Snyder reflected on the first anniversary of the “worst day" of her life


By Max Londberg
The Kansas City Star

ST. LOUIS — The widow of a slain St. Louis County police officer reflected on the first anniversary of the “worst day of my life.”

Elizabeth Snyder, in an emotional post on Facebook, told of the phone call from her brother in the early morning, the frantic drive to the hospital with him and then the phone call, in the parking lot, that she’d been dreading.

An undated photo provided by the St. Louis County Police Department shows St. Louis County Police officer Blake Snyder. (St. Louis County Police Department via AP)
An undated photo provided by the St. Louis County Police Department shows St. Louis County Police officer Blake Snyder. (St. Louis County Police Department via AP)

“I could see it on his face. My love, my closest friend, my confidant — was gone,” Snyder wrote. “That day is still a haze. I remember seeing him, not being able to touch him because of the crime that was committed. I didn’t even get to hold his hand one last time. I didn’t get to kiss him, or hug him. Or be close to him.”

Snyder’s husband, Blake Snyder, was killed Oct. 6, 2016, while responding to a disturbance call at a park. He was shot point-blank, and an 18-year-old man was later charged in the killing.

The 33-year-old had been with the department for four years, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

He left behind his wife and then-2-year-old son, Malachi.

St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar called Snyder a “tremendous police officer,” according to Snyder’s obituary.

Elizabeth Snyder wrote that she couldn’t divine a reason as to why her husband was killed, but she hopes to one day embrace him again in the afterlife.

“But until then, I’ll be patient. I’ll be strong. And I will continue his legacy by raising Malachi in the way he would have wanted,” she wrote. “We will make it. We will.”

The post has been shared thousands of times and has been seen by tens of thousands.

Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens tweeted a link to Snyder’s post late Friday. He wrote it was “something everyone should read.”

Thousands more have written comments about the post.

“Elizabeth, I don’t know you, never met you, but ... I want you to know that you have a very strong testimony and you seem to be an amazing young lady,” wrote John Kirkpatrick in a comment. “Stay strong.”

Read Snyder’s post in its entirety:

“One year ago...

I was awakened shortly after 5am to a phone call from my brother. Why would Justin be calling me so early? It hadn't clicked yet. All he said was, "Elizabeth, you need to get yourself up and get Malachi ready to leave because I'm on my way to pick you up. Something's happened to Blake." It still hadn't registered in my brain that something serious was going on.

Ok, ok. Put some clothes on. Put my hair up. Packed the diaper bag. Then it hit me. Call Justin back. "What happened to him? Tell me, Justin. Tell me right now." He wouldn't. So I just figured Blake was injured. That was it.

I will NEVER forget that ride. Racing down 270 at 120mph, practically flying. And then Justin gets a call as we are pulling up to the hospital. And I could see it on his face. My love, my closest friend, my confidant- was gone. Just like that. Shock took over my body. That day is still a haze. I remember seeing him, not being able to touch him because of the crime that was committed. I didn't even get to hold his hand one last time. I didn't get to kiss him, or hug him. Or be close to him. He was taken away from me, and all I could do was cry.

Today marks one year since the worst day of my life. And I feel like it was yesterday. As I go over that day in my mind, all I can think is- if there was less hate in this world, maybe he would still be alive. If there was more compassion and understanding in this life, maybe he would still be alive. I don't think I'll ever fully understand why God allowed this to happen. Maybe when I reach Heaven, I'll know. But by then it won't matter, because I'll get to hug him again. We will laugh together again. And I can hold him again. But until then, I'll be patient. I'll be strong. And I will continue his legacy by raising Malachi in the way he would have wanted. We will make it. We will.”

©2017 The Kansas City Star

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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