WESTON, Wis. (WSAW) -- Immediately following the March 22 shooting, the spouses and significant others of Everest Metro Police officers banded together to support each other and their families. Out of that support came the Everest Metro Police Department Blue Hearts group-- an opportunity to spread a bond beyond the boarders of the community.
"We found an opportunity for us to all be together and support each other,” explained Deb Heilmann, wife of an Everest Metro Police captain.
Support through one of the toughest times these women; spouses and significant others of Everest Metro Police officers experienced.
Kristi Stroik is the wife of an Everest Metro Police sergeant.
"That day I think was a roller coaster of emotion for all of us,” Stroik said.
March 22 stirred up fears in many that day, especially for these women.
“He's going to run towards the bad call, not away from it. One of the big reasons why we love our guys so much,” explained Stroik.
That emotion and fear turned into a need for support.
"A month doesn't heal that, two months doesn't heal that.... We're still dealing and healing,” she said.
And the women found it in each other.
"During the initial stages, it was really a chance for us to talk to other people who were experiencing and going through something we felt like a lot of people didn't understand at the moment as we were grieving and working through that,” Heilmann.
Support from people that have been there and understand how these women feel.
"To know that we have people who can understand how hard it is to know that you're sending your husband back out to work and they have a possibility of not coming home,” said Kara Weiland, wife of fallen Detective Jason Weiland.
Now, members of the EMPD Blue Hearts say their goals of the group has snowballed in finding ways to say thank you to the community that supported them .
"How do we turn this into something positive for ourselves and our families? For the guys at the PD? for the community?,” asked Stroik.
The group is even spreading that message of support outside the community.
"And one of the things that we're doing is now is we're sending a card from the EMPD Blue Hearts to all the families of fallen officers throughout the nation,” Heilmann shared.
“[We] send care packages to those families, especially the children to let them know that they're not alone, there's somebody... Even though they could be thousands of miles away knows what they're going through.... that we're thinking of them,” Weiland explained.
They say they do it because they received that same love and care.
They say as the Everest Metro Police department family grows they'll continue to invite the significant others of officers to join their group for any support they may need.