By Shawn Chitnis

DENVER (CBS4) – Staff at Rose Medical Center presented more than 1,400 thank you cards to Denver police officers on Wednesday as a way to say thank you for their service and the risk they take each day to protect their community.

(credit: CBS)

“To summarize my vision in just two words, Thank you,” said Nicole Ellis, an ICU technician at Rose Medical Center.  “I never thought this would come about and take off like it did.”

Ellis remembers the morning of an officer-involved shooting in Highlands Ranch that killed a member of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Zackari Parrish died on New Year’s Eve.

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She was also moved by the coverage of another deadly shooting in Colorado and the funeral for a deputy in Adams County, Heath Gumm. That day she was reminded about the need to say “thank you” to law enforcement for the risks they take each day.

“I live close by and heard the gunshots,” Ellis said of the shooting in Highlands Ranch. “I work in a place that has a lot of employees, wondered if we could get a bunch of cards signed for Denver Police.”

(credit: CBS)

Leaders at Rose Medical Center got behind the idea and the call went out to all employees to sign specially-designed note cards for the Denver Police Department. The first card was signed on Feb. 13 and three weeks later enough were made for each officer.

“I didn’t expect the overflow of people who cared,” said Lt. Ernie Martinez with Denver Police. “Looking through these cards, you can see a lot of love here.”

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Officers arrived at the lobby on Wednesday to receive the cards and show their appreciation to the staff who took the time to write a “thank you” note. They say it means so much coming from another group of people dedicated to serving others.

“Writings their own personal notes of thank you, notes of prayers and thoughts, it’s a beautiful thing,” said Lt. Martinez. “They’re our heroes, when people are hurt, injured, stabbed, shot, beat up, where do they come? They come to a hospital.”

(credit: CBS)

Ellis and her co-workers were touched to see the impact their cards had on the department.

“Very humbling to know how much they appreciate it,” she said. “We all have each other’s backs and thank each other for the jobs,” she said.

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Officers brought the cards with them to distribute to each of the more than 1,400 officers who make up the department. Some got the chance to read many of the notes before leaving the hospital.

“‘Dear Denver Police, we love you guys and so appreciate all that you do for us,'” one officer read out loud.  “‘You are appreciated, admired, and respected more than you know. Thank you and god bless you all.'”

Shawn Chitnis reports for CBS4 News at 10 on weekends and CBS4 News at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. throughout the week. Email him story ideas at and connect with him on Twitter or Facebook.

  1. Ann Pirie says:

    Oh, wow, yeah!!! Thank you Rose Hospital for letting these awesome officers know you appreciate them and care. They are absolutely a magnificent bunch of wonderful people who chose to keep Denver safe.

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