Finding ways to show love and support during a time of heartbreak

May 8, 2024, 12:28 PM

SOUTH JORDAN As the state continues to honor Santaquin Police Sgt. Bill Hooser, there are ways we can all show our love and support amid heartbreak. 

“If you feel like it’s something small and insignificant and you’re not gonna do it: Do it. Because it really adds up,” said Shante Johnson. 

Johnson knows the positive impact community can make firsthand. 

On Sept. 1, 2013, her husband, Draper Police Sgt. Derek Johnson, was shot and killed in the line of duty.

Draper Police Sgt. Derek Johnson was killed in the line of duty on Sept. 1, 2013. (KSL TV)

“Life I didn’t think would ever move on,” Johnson said. “I didn’t think I would ever be whole. And I’m not sure I can say I’m whole, but I definitely am in a really good space with the support that I’ve had.”

At the time, their son was 6-years-old.

Relating to the family

As the state mourns the loss of another officer, Johnson can relate all too well to what the family is going through.

Johnson serves as a Fraternal Order of Police Family liaison, in a time of hurt, she said there is deep value in showing up for the family and department now and years down the road.

“That just says, ‘We love you. And we’re here for you. And, you know, that’s just amazing,’” Johnson said. 

The memorial that is growing in honor of Hooser is something Johnson said his family will hold close forever. 

“Those are treasures for us,” Johnson said. “I still read those notes, and I look back on those photos and see the posters that were made… They’re gonna be OK, and we’ll make sure of that.” 

The funeral for Hooser will be Monday at Utah Valley University in Orem. 

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Finding ways to show love and support during a time of heartbreak