Just two days after what would have been Officer Michael Flisk's 47th birthday, his wife and four children listened as Mayor Richard Daley reflected on his decorated life during Wednesday's meeting of the City Council.
"He felt this was a profession, not a job. An extraordinary rare individual (who) said to all of us that public service meant something to him," said an emotional mayor.
Daley recalled the day that evil struck and took the life of an officer who devoted his life to public service.
"This one did not come home to his family. And that is the question to me that will always bother me. That he did not go home to his family. An evil person destroyed his life," he said.
The 19-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department was shot and killed in broad daylight, while processing a burglary scene in the 8100 block of South Burnham Avenue on Nov. 26, 2010.
The burglary victim, retired Chicago Housing Authority police officer Stephen Peters, called police after discovering that his vehicle had been broken into and parts had been removed. Officer Flisk was at the scene collecting evidence when the burglary suspect returned.
Police say that man, 19-year-old Timothy Herring, shot and killed Flisk, then shot and killed Peters, who was standing nearby.
"There simply are no words that can relieve the suffering these families go through. But we hope that they know that this city and its citizens share their grief and that we stand with them" said Ald. Ed Burke (14th).
"He was taken too soon from us at age 46, and our neighborhood has lost. The department and citizens of Chicago have lost. But most of all, his young familys lives will be empty in places his energy and laughter filled," added Ald. Virginia Rugai (19th).
Before closing, Daley made a final promise to Flisk's family.
"I pledge to you that his story will be told with the help of you, to show those pictures of what a police officer is today. It's not just a uniform and a star number," he said.
Flisk's star will eventually be retired in the memorial cabinet in the lobby of the Chicago Police Department's headquarters.