David Taffet, left, and his late husband, Brian Cross, at their wedding in June 2016. (Photo by Tammye Nash)
Yesterday (Wednesday, March 15), David Taffet shared this story about the night his husband, Brian Cross, died, and how it took 911 some 20 minutes to answer his call. David was then interviewed by every local news station —Fox 4, NBC 5, WFAA Channel 8, CBS Channel 11, CW 33 and Telemundo — and by the CBS Morning News. I hear that the story aired this morning by WFAA Channel 8 was picked up by the national ABC morning news show, Good Morning America, too.
We will never know if Brian might still be alive had it not taken so long for David to be able to get in touch with 911. And that is exactly the point. So while I know it is so very difficult for David to have to relive that night each time he tells the story, I also know he’s willing to keep telling the story if it will help keep the same thing from happening to someone else.
The memorial to ambushed police officers set up in front of DPD headquarters on July 9
Funeral services for three of the police officers killed in an ambush in downtown Dallas on July 7 have been set. Details are below.
Westboro Baptist Church announced on its webpage that it plans to be in Dallas to protest during this week. The “church,” listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, usually lists its protest plans here. As of this writing, Dallas is not on the schedule, but organizers want to be ready to shield family members from having to see the group’s hate signs. Members of the DFW Sisters have expressed interest in being angels who block the view of protesters from family.
Funeral services have been set for Lorne B. Ahrens, Michael J. Smith and Brent Thompson. Services for officers Patricio Zamarripa and Michael Krol are pending.
A free concert of healing takes place at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 14 at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St.
Singers from around the area will participate in a massed choir performance led by Credo, a community choir conducted by former Turtle Creek Chorale artistic director Jonathan Palant.
“We have invited members of every church, synagogue and community choir in the Metroplex to join us not only in singing out against violence, but also to sing out for peace, love, and unity,” Palant said. “The Dallas Police Choir has also been extended an invitation to perform.”
Singers from the Dallas Symphony Chorus, Turtle Creek Chorale, Dallas Independent School District, Cathedral of Hope, Temple Shalom and from many churches plan to perform, Palant said. The concert will include appearances by local opera star Ava Pine and area favorites Denise Lee, Paul Mason and Liz Mikel.
Several speakers, both religious and lay leaders, will offer thoughts and words of encouragement.
Singers who would like to participate should enter the Meyerson through the glass doors on Flora Street by 5:30 p.m. and follow signage toward the stage. There is no pre-registration. Sheet music will be distributed at the start of rehearsal. There is no charge to sing and all singers are welcome. Attire for performers is business casual.
No tickets or reservations. Tickets are open seating.
Dallas police identified the shooter killed in the El Centro parking garage as Micah X. Johnson.
Police said he told negotiators he wanted “to kill white people, especially white officers.” He was not affiliated with any group or terrorist organization, but angry about recent police shootings in other cities, as far as police know at this point in the investigation. He was in the Army Reserves as a junior officer.
Of all police departments in major U.S. cities, DPD has the lowest rate of officer-involved shootings.
No information has been released about the DPD officers who were killed and injured, but DART has given out names of their officers shot and information about the officer killed.
The three DART officers who were shot and are expected to recover from their injuries are Omar Cannon, 44, Misty McBride, 32, and Jesus Retana, 39.
The officer killed, Brent Thompson, 43, was married two weeks ago. His wife, Emily, is also a DART officer and was not on duty last night.
People will gather at Thanksgiving Square at noon for a service to remember the slain officers.
If you work downtown, you are asked to stay home. Streets in downtown Dallas closed include a 25-square block area — everything from Houston to Griffin streets and Ross Avenue to Jackson Street. No traffic will be allowed until further notice.
A 12th officer and a second civilian was reported shot. The death toll remains at five.
Chief Brown corrected information reported overnight. The suspect that died in the El Centro parking garage died as a result of the bomb squad robot detonating a bomb near him.
According to Resource Center spokesman Rafael McDonnell, one of the DART officers injured worked for partner benefits with his husband in 2013 when DART was resisting covering gay and lesbian officers equally with straight officers.
LGBT Police liaison Laura Martin was assigned to the demonstration. She worked throughout the night and will be back at work a little later this morning, but she reports she is safe.