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Remembering Sean Daley

Tribute to Sean Daly: Family man, public servant

Three little boys lay in the dark, confused and uncertain what was happening.

The bedroom window slid open, and a policeman climbed into their bedroom. "We're going to get you out of here, boys, don't be afraid." One by one he lifted them out, put them in his patrol car, gave them some Teddy bears to hold, and drove them to shelter. They didn't know it then, but that was the night their parents died and their world was turned upside down.

For many policemen, that would have been the end of the story - not so for ISP Officer Sean Daly. Every night during their weeks at Children's Village, on his own time Sean would go spend time with them, playing with them, reading to them, helping them settle for the night. Sometimes in the middle of the night there would be a call, and he would go, just to hold them, to reassure and comfort them. He was their guy as long as they needed him.

His affection and attention created a bridge for them, between the lives they had known, and their uncertain future. And they never forgot.

Officer Daly served the public in North Idaho for 30 years before illness forced an early retirement. During that time he helped thousands of people, told many more thousands of entertaining stories, and performed innumerable acts above and beyond the call of duty. "He had such tremendous respect for the public," says his wife, Jackie, "and he just had a big heart. Sean never saw the work he did as just a traffic stop or just another accident, he saw the people: moms and dads, sons and daughters. It wasn't just his job, something he had to do every day; he respected them as people." Read more. Connie Godak, Special to the CdA Press

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Cindy Hval
Cindy Hval is a freelance columnist for the Voices neighborhood sections. Her Front Porch column appears twice a month in the Thursday Voice.