Restaurant server sends special note to local officers in wake of Milwaukee officer's death

NOW: Restaurant server sends special note to local officers in wake of Milwaukee officer’s death

MILWAUKEE, WI (CBS 58) -- A local server has a special message for the law enforcement community, especially after the tragic loss of Milwaukee officer Matthew Rittner.

Rittner was killed Wednesday while serving a search warrant on the city’s south side.

"This was such an unfortunate event that really didn't need to happen."

The day after the tragedy, while working at The Cheesecake Factory, Stephanie Wengel noticed a family of five. The mother was wearing a flag shirt with a blue line.

“I immediately recognized it had to be somebody who was a cop, so I asked her. She said, 'actually, yeah I am a cop,' and she looked at her husband and said, he is too and all I said was thank you."

But Wengel didn't feel saying thank you was enough. She decided to write them a sentimental letter.

"Dear officers, I can't fathom what you're going through. I wanted them to know that they were loved, and despite the situation that has happened, I will always back the blue."

Wengel, whose father is a retired firefighter, said she understands what officers go through.

"I can't imagine going through one of their funerals...I grew up with a whole bunch of cops as my neighbors, a whole bunch of firemen as my neighbors, and I don't think they get enough recognition," she said.

The couple appreciated her gesture so much, they called her manager. "She was emotional on the phone, and super grateful."

Wengel didn't expect to be recognized, she said she was just paying it forward.

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