Deptford residents continue to rally around officer Robert “Bobby” Shishler, who was shot in the leg while pursuing a suspect on March 10 and remains at Cooper Hospital in Camden.
The community’s efforts on the officer’s behalf have included fundraisers sponsored by area businesses. The situation has also impacted Shishler’s colleagues in the Deptford police department.
“We’re taking it one day at a time, as it’s been hard on everybody,” said officer Anthony Gatto. “We’re just keeping prayers up, trying to stay optimistic.”
Businesses that lent their support include Deptford’s Ice Cream Love and Holy City Publick House in Gloucester City. Two Red Cross blood drives were held at Almonesson Lake firehouse and the Deptford community center.
T-shirts with Shishler’s name, badge number and the words, “We’ve got your six” imprinted on the back have been worn by supporters, including teachers at Pine Acres Early Childhood Center. Wristbands that read “Shishler strong” have also been promoted by the township.
Yard signs showing the American flag have been spotted in yards across town and blue porch lights have been brightening the skies. Police departments in nearby towns like Mantua and Mullica Hill are also supporting Shishler on their social media pages.
“I am very happy with how much the community has come together to support Bobby,” said Michael Rasmus, a close friend of Shishler’s. “From all the small businesses to the big businesses, to all the help with making signs, shirts, wrist bands, blue lights and stickers.
“Along with having the blood drive, every event has had a huge gathering and outcome,” he added. “Seeing the love and support for Bobby and the Shishler family is a blessing.”
“The community outreach is awesome,” Gatto noted. “I saw that someone on Facebook took a drone video of Bexhill Farms, and you just see all the blue lights everywhere. I think it’s awesome all the support that all the businesses have been giving, like all the backing from the community.
“I think it’s awesome.”