In January 2019, Officer Roman from the Cook County Sheriff’s Office reached out to us at Unrefined Art about our Memorial Woodprints. He asked if it would be possible to get a woodprint finished over the weekend for his friend’s funeral. He then shared his story, saying that his friend and coworker was killed en route by a drunk driver. The officer was well-loved in his department. It was a tragic loss, and was felt greatly by all who knew him. Officer Roman got together with the rest of the department and decided to do whatever they could to honor their friend’s life and to make the funeral special for his family. We were all touched by Officer Roman’s story, and even more blown away when he drove all the way from Chicago to pick up the woodprint in order to get it on time for the funeral. A local Michigan family heard about Officer Roman’s story and were so moved by his friendship and dedication that they paid for the woodprint. When Officer Roman came to pick it up, tears filled his eyes. We thanked him for his service and dedication, and said how sorry we were for his loss. We talked with him for several minutes and prayed with him; we were all equally moved by each other. Officer Roman’s love for his friend was evident, and it was heartwarming to see the camaraderie and friendship in the department. We later heard from Officer Roman that the funeral was indeed special, and that the officer’s life was truly honored.
“I have shared this story many times over. How your family all the way in Michigan touched our hearts here in Chicago. … When our honor guard team walked in to the funeral [that] morning, carrying this beautiful piece, when [the officer]’s brothers, sister and parents saw it, words cannot accurately describe that moment. Our executive level management was present and equally moved. Your gift allowed us to make [the officer]’s services that much more special. It was a gift from your family to [the officer]’s family, we are forever grateful. … I am so fortunate that at such a difficult time you and and your beautiful family was put in our path. Who would’ve thought that a family 2 hours away would have blessed our family in such a big way.” – Officer Roman
We are grateful for our men and women in blue who put their lives on the line for us every day. We thank you for your service and may God bless you.
Long story short, we split the business and each took a part of it and went into competition in the marketplace. There were a lot of hurt and angry feelings on both sides, families were effected, grudges were made, bitterness took root.