Today is the memorial service for United States Probation Officer Michael Roberts. He died on Saturday Octber 1, 2016 and I am heavily grieved. I am still grieving the death of someone so close to me, so this is really hard and although my soul couldn’t physically make his celebration, I am engaging in my own right now at this moment. We were more than co-workers or peers. You oftentimes see people in a professional capacity and sometimes consciously “you” leave them there, a professional acquaintance, but…your soul and your psyche put them where they really belong…in your heart and in your soul. When I received a call from one of his peers that he had died, I was grateful she made sure I was parked first…because my heart broke on the spot…it was then I realized I had again, lost a dear friend. In that moment I realized I would no longer see his bright smile. I would no longer see him standing in my door with a chi latte for me from Starbucks. I realized I would no longer sit with him while we discussed “some knucklehead” on supervision that Mike saw more potential in than they saw in themselves.
Mike was the kind of Officer who believed that people were more than they had done. He believed in providing second chances and helping his people in every way he could. That is how we met…When I first started my business, Mike checked out my system and outcomes for reentry. He tried me out with a couple of his “knucklehead” clients…the ones that he felt if something didn’t turn them around, they would go back to jail. I said let me try…We were able to work with them and the majority of them were able to take advantage of that last chance provided by Mike Roberts. He cared. He believed people could be successful if just given the right supports.
God I will miss my friend. I will never forget my friend and I am sad that when I talked to him last, I wasn’t conscious enough to say “Mike, YOU ROCK! And the WORLD is better because of YOU!” Rest in Heaven my Friend.