Impressive response from Chief Eaton
To the editor:
My wife participated in the Josh Billings Run aground as an iron woman in September 2014. At about the halfway point of the 10k run, the last phase of the triathlon, I got a call from her that she was cramping badly and needed me to bring her some water to finish the race. The road, however, was closed to traffic and when I approached the sheriff and explained what I was doing he said I couldn't proceed.
At that time a Stockbridge police cruiser came by and asked what was going on. When I told him my wife was in distress he put on his flashers and told me to follow his cruiser as he drove down Rte. 183 toward my wife. When we reached her the EMTs were with her giving her fluids and asking if she wanted to continue.
My wife put a lot into training for this event and told them she'd crawl to the finish line before she dropped out. The Stockbridge officer applauded her for being a fighter and told me to drive slowly behind her to the finish line to make sure she was OK. I thanked him for his help in getting me to her and asked him his name. He said he was Robert Eaton the chief of the Stockbridge police department.
I don't know anything about his performance in other areas of his job but what I do know is that his compassion and understanding of what was taking place was remarkable. He was precise, solution-oriented, and showed exceptional sensitivity to the situation. He humanized the problem and avoided a knee-jerk "the road is closed" response.
Given the current state of police and civilian interactions his actions were commendable!