Police Officer Jesus Manuel “Chuy” Cordova.
Nogales Police Department, AZ
End of Watch: Friday, April 27, 2018
Two years ago, on April 27, 2018, Nogales Police Officer Jesus Cordova was shot and killed while attempting to apprehend a carjacking suspect. Left behind were his wife, Alyssa, and their 4 young children to cope with the loss. Once we heard the news about Officer Cordova, as the Community Directory for Thin Blue Line USA (TBLUSA), I reached out to the Nogales Police Department to send our condolences and to offer help for the Cordova family. I let them know that we had plans to start a fundraiser in memory of Police Officer Jesus “Chuy” Cordova. The department put me in touch with Alyssa, and Alyssa expressed to me how touched she was by our support and that the fundraiser would be a wonderful contribution to her husband’s memory. TBLUSA was able to raise $1,524.63 and the funds were donated to the Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.) organization as requested by Alyssa. C.O.P.S is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that provides resources to help rebuild the lives of survivors of fallen officers. In memory of Officer Cordova, C.O.P.S. created a tile with Officer’s Cordova’s name engraved on it and today it is part of the Road of Hope at the C.O.P.S headquarters in Camdenton Missouri.
Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with Alyssa and asked her to be a part of a new project that we are working on. I let her know that TBLUSA wanted to shed a more positive light on police officers during these challenging times by sharing stories like Alyssa's that offered hope. I talked to her about the day when she got the call that her husband had been shot and later did not survive, she said it was the most difficult thing she’s ever had to go through, but today is finding new ways to cope with her loss. At the time of her husband’s death she was pregnant with their 4th child, who she says looks just like Jesus, and their 3 children under the age of 7 to raise on her own. She admits, when she looks into her children's eyes, it’s a reminder to her that life must go on and that she must stay strong for them. Alyssa does everything in her power to make her children’s lives as normal as possible. One of the changes she had to make shortly after Jesus died was to move from the town she called home. His death was so public and everyday she was hounded by the press and people in her community, asking her questions and not respecting her privacy. Alyssa called it “negative attention” that was too hard for her to handle. She knew in order to bring back stability into her life she would have to move away in order to start anew. For Alyssa, that meant leaving behind the home she shared with Jesus and the people she loved the most. She said that was a very difficult decision to make. As we talked, she let me know that Jesus was a kind man who loved his family and the community he served. She said he was respectful and very protective when it came to her and their children. As our conversation continued I realized how strong Alyssa was and how proud I was of all the things she had accomplished in a very short period of time.
Alyssa is on a mission and learning to move forward while keeping her husband’s memory alive. She now travels with her 4 children and her family, to attend or speak at events honoring her husband and other fallen officers. She is making it a point to be wherever Jesus will be honored for his bravery and dedication to his work in law enforcement. She had the privilege of meeting President Trump during Police Week in May of 2018 when they honored Jesus for his service and sacrifice. Alyssa continues her work for the Thin Blue Line family and considers herself to be an advocate for survivors of the fallen. She wants to help others by being the voice for so many survivors who have to cope with the sudden loss of a loved one. She takes her responsibilities very seriously and understands what survivors have to face after such a great loss. She continues to work closely with the 100 Club of Arizona, a non-profit organization that provides immediate financial assistance to families of public safety officers and firefighters who are seriously injured or killed in the line of duty. She is also very thankful to KOLD News 13 for their station having a diaper and baby wipes drive; the abundant supply of donations that she received has lasted for over 2 years.
From her husband's death she learned that life is too short to waste and it’s taught her not to take things for granted like her health. Good nutrition and exercise has become a part of her daily routine. She says the love from family, from strangers, from the law enforcement community, and from her husband is what keeps her going. Everyday she is grateful for the time she had with Jesus and that she is proud to be a police wife. It breaks her heart to see the crisis that is happening to our law enforcement today, understanding that law enforcement across the United States is facing unprecedented challenges. Her hope is that someday people will see more good in our officers and come to understand that their jobs are a calling that is taken seriously, as it was for Jesus. She knows first hand that police officers are very concerned for their community and its members. She believes every day gets more stressful for our officers as they watch the crisis unfold when really all they wish for is peace in their communities.
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