Police Officer Dies From H1N1 Virus
By: Leah Uko
OMAHA (KPTM) - Omaha Police Department mourned the death of an officer Friday.
Officer Greg Hamill, 43, was a 12-year veteran of OPD. Police said he passed away Wednesday, February 19th at Methodist Hospital follow complications from H1N1 virus.
News of Hamill's death was definitely a wake up call that the flu strain can impact anyone.
Former partner, Craig Wylie spoke with FOX 42 News about why he took Hamill's death as a lesson. Friday, Wylie said he was still in disbelief.
"We deal with violence, we deal with sudden instances all the time," Wylie continued. "It never prepares you for something like this."
Wylie described Hamill as the ultimate people person and team player.
"When you were talking to him, it wasn't just that he was just talking to you, just to talk to you. It was always that it means something. That you were valued."
Hamill was originally from Houston, Texas and used to box. He was an overall healthy man, which was partly why Wylie was shocked at the cause of his death.
"It's Greg Hamill. He's like a rock. He's that steady, steady guy that, you know, has your back and is going to be there for you."
The Douglas County Health Department said while the reported flu cases have steadily decreased, the case numbers are still there. It saw 55 last week and as of Friday, February 21, 2014 there were 41 new cases reported.
Wylie said after becoming close friends with Hamill during the two and a half years they patrolled northeast Omaha together, he learned to never take life for granted because it is precious.
"Cherish everyday that you have with your family, with your friends. Because you just don't know. Life is chaotic."
Officer Hamill is survived by his wife, Vanessa and their two children. A memorial fund has been set up at the Omaha Police Credit Union for Officer Hamill in care of Vanessa Hamill.