Today marks the anniversary of the line-of-duty death of Corporal Eugene Cole and one town is making it a day of positive acts instead of a day of sorrow.

Remembering the Details of That Dark Day.

April 25th, 2018 was a day most of us in Maine will never forget. For me, it's the day I first heard of a robbery at a convenience store in Norridgewock, and, for some reason, the scanner was going crazy with police. Something wasn't right. Eventually, the news came out that a member of the Somerset County Sheriff's Office had been killed in the line of duty and the suspect had then stolen his truck and taken it to the convenience store, before vanishing into the night. It would be four days before the police caught up to John Williams and took him into custody. He's now serving a life sentence.

How Can We Recognize Corporal Eugene Cole Day?

Fast-forward 4 years and today is recognized as Corporal Eugene Cole Day in Norridgewock, where Corporal Cole was killed. It would be easy to make the day all about black clothing and remembrance ceremonies, tears, and sorrow. But instead, town officials decided to turn it into a day of hope, with neighbors helping neighbors.

On the Town of Norridgewock's website, a list of possible activities gives residents some ideas about how they can mark the day. Some of the suggestions include:

  • Picking up roadside litter
  • Helping their neighbors with the yard work
  • Donate to the charity of their choice

The rest of Maine could take part as well, simply by doing something positive today. Buy a coffee for the car behind you in line, hold a door open for someone else, or let someone with fewer items get in front of you in the checkout line. It doesn't have to be a big gesture. Just something that says, "we're from Maine and we care about our neighbors."

Our thoughts today are with Corporal Cole's family, as they remember this sad anniversary in their own way. Wishing them all peace on this day.

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