EL PASO COUNTY — After Monday's deadly mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, the community there is receiving outpouring of prayers and support during a heartbreaking time. Local law enforcement and organizations are offering some of that support, including the El Paso County Sheriff's Office and Shield616.
"It's heart breaking to watch that happen and it's even more heart breaking when lives are lost," said Jake Skifstad, the president and founder of Shield616."We all bleed blue, we all bleed red. It doesn't matter where you're at, your heart hurts."
Skifstad was a Colorado Springs police officer for 14 years before founding the organization, which provides protective gear for first responders, including the Boulder County Sheriff's Office. He reached out to the Sheriff to let him know that they're not forgotten.
"I texted the sheriff and said I'm praying for you and all of your guys, and if you need anything we're here," said Skifstad. "Our hearts are broken, but if you look at what happened yesterday and watch the first responders, you saw true bravery."
Flags were also flown at half staff outside of the Colorado Springs Police Department. Meanwhile, the El Paso County Sheriff's Office is offering their condolences too.
"We could not be more profoundly sad and supportive of everyone who was involved in yesterday's events. We know firsthand what the Boulder police department is going through. And it is a challenging, tough time, emotional, heartbreaking," said Jacqueline Reed, the public information officer for the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.
Reed said the office lost two deputies since 2018, and they're familiar with the toll tragedy like this can take.
"There's just not enough words to describe the difficult time that they're in for," said Reed.
While her heart goes out to the ten victims who were killed, she says, "regardless of the color of your uniform, we are all a family and when one of us perishes, we all feel that loss very deeply. Tragedies like this remind you that you may not go home to your family because you were killed in the line of duty protecting citizens of the community."
Every year, Shield616 gathers a group of people to ride bikes across Colorado. On the back of their t-shirts is a list of police officers who have been killed in the line of duty. Officer Eric Talley's name will be among them this year.