Calgary Sun | 20Jun2011 | Orest Slepokura

Tragic Irony

Re: “A daughter’s fight to honour her dad,” Charles Adler (June 17, 2011).

In 1963, LAPD detectives Karl Hettinger and Ian Campbell were kidnapped by criminals, driven to an onion field, shot, and left for dead. Campbell died, but Hettinger survived to testify against the two killers. Sentenced to die, the killers appealed until they were saved from the executioner.

Hettinger, meanwhile, was unable to save himself from the persistent guilt he’d not done all he could to save his partner. Like Sgt. Eddie Adamson, he experienced mood disorders that included suicidal impulses. Hettinger’s survivor guilt, in fact, far outstripped any remorse the killers might’ve had for their crime. Tragic irony -- or what!

Orest Slepokura