Trooper Mark Gilberg’s patrol shifts always ended the same way for 37 years, but this day they ended in a very different way.
Most of us make our jobs part of our daily lives and who we are. In fact, most of us spend more time at work with our coworkers than we do with our own families at home. Mark Gilberg worked for the Arizona Department of Public Safety for 37 years as a trooper.
In that time, he has stopped about 50,000 cars.
He has also been in car chases and been called to accidents. He has even had to tell families that a loved one had died, which was a very sad thing to do.
“I’ve seen almost everything, and it’s been fun. It’s a very stressful job with ups and downs, Mark told 2KUTV.
But it was his last call, on March 30, 2018, that made him famous around the world.
His wife of 40 years, Carol, caught him taking the call on video, and when his son put it on social media, it went viral.
Carol wanted to keep the video as a reminder of her husband’s time on the police force.
Because of how sad it was, the video ended up going viral.
It shows Mark wiping his tears away in his police car.
Before he picks up his police radio, he clears his throat and tries to calm down.
“I tried hard not to get upset. Mark said, “I did everything I could to stop it.
“I’m not sure, it just came to me. “I don’t know what to say.”
He got more than five million views because of those tears.
He told the police department’s website, “I just thought about all my friends in the department who have died, either naturally or in the line of duty, and I thought about how beautiful Escalante National Monument is and how I see it every day on my way home from work.”
“I’ve always respected cops, and I always will.”
Mark tells the dispatcher that this is his last call when the dispatcher answers the radio. The dispatcher tells Mark that everyone else on the other end of the radio is also getting emotional.
He then thanks everyone who has helped him or worked with him and says it was an honor and a privilege to be an Arizona State trooper.
“It’s been a lot of fun. “Thanks a lot, and keep smiling,” he says as the call ends.
Mark then starts crying again, and the video ends before he can stop.
“In the days before his official retirement date, he was taking other people’s shifts and didn’t seem to be slowing down at all. “I told him to calm down because I didn’t want him to spend his retirement going to court on his cases,” said Sgt. John Bottoms, who called Mark’s work ethic “legendary.”
Mark’s whole time as a police officer was spent in Highway Patrol. Arizona State Police said they think he is the trooper who has been in uniform the longest in the history of the State Highway Patrol.
Mark said of his job, “I’m glad it’s over, but I miss it.”
Mark plans to spend his retirement traveling and spending time with his grandchildren. He never thought that the video of his last call would be seen by millions of people. His story was told on Fox and Friends, NBC News, and a lot of other shows. Even after two years, we’re still writing about it!
“It’s pretty funny. You know, it all started when my son suggested that my wife videotape the last call. He thought it would be a nice thing for the family to have as a reminder,” he said. “At his request, we uploaded the video to YouTube, and then my phone started going crazy. It’s been a great way to honor him. I loved my job,”
And the video below makes that very clear.
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