(My sister has a park named after her in Ann Arbor, Michigan. I’m sure many locals call it many different names and I’m fine with that. My clan calls the David Douglass Sr. Memorial Park “the ferry jetty” and many locals have a variety of names for this tiny patch of paradise. This post is to remind all of us about the man whose name adorns the small monument at the park entrance.)
North Cape May is not a large neighborhood, only about 1 1/2 square miles. The bay gives us an air of grandness bigger than our britches.
Patrolman David Douglass Sr. was shot and killed in our neighborhood almost 28 years ago while pursuing a suspected burglar. The suspect fired at Officer Douglass, mortally wounding him. His body now rests in the Cold Spring Presbyterian Church cemetery just a couple of miles away from the park.
A plaque memorializes his name at the entrance to the park, but perhaps the words of friends, family, and neighbors give a better sense of the loss felt by our neighborhood.
David Douglass Sr. was both a local police officer and firefighter. He was a husband and father to a son and two daughters, the oldest only 15 at the time of his death. He has both a school and a park named after him, and his son has followed his steps into law enforcement.
Next time you amble down the narrow road to the park, take a moment to view the memorial honoring the man. I hope it brings some comfort to the family, as I get comfort from seeing my sister’s name on her park.