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Injured officer's wife describes ‘worst nightmare'

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OGDEN — For families of the officers injured and killed in the Ogden shooting Wednesday night, their lives have been turned upside down. The wife of one of the injured officers shared her feelings with KSL after a very long night of uncertainty.

"It's your worst nightmare to wake up to that and have that call," Natalie Burrell said.

She got that phone call shortly after her husband of nine years, Kasey Burrell, was shot Wednesday night. He had been hit in the abdomen and head.

I cannot say enough about police officers. They put their life on the line. Kasey has not changed for me, for our kids. He's the best dad that anyone could ever want.

–Natalie Burrell, wife of injured officer

By the time Natalie arrived at McKay-Dee Hospital, her husband was already in surgery. He spent the next eight hours in the operating room.

After getting a couple hours of sleep, Natalie went back to the hospital Thursday afternoon. She's proud of her husband, and thankful.

"I cannot say enough about police officers. They put their life on the line," she said. "Kasey has not changed for me, for our kids. He's the best dad that anyone could ever want."

Kasey Burrell has served with the Ogden Police Department since 2003, and has been a member of the Weber-Morgan Narcotics Task Force for the past five years. He's a good cop and a good guy, Natalie said, and he's won a number of distinguished service awards.

Officers injured
  • Nate Hutchinson, Weber Co. Sheriff's Office
    Shot 4 times (2 to the vest, 1 to arm, 1 to hip); in stable condition
  • Jason Vanderwarf, Roy Police Dept.
    Shot in hip; treated and released
  • Shawn Grogan, Ogden Police Dept.
    Shot in face; in critical condition
  • Kasey Burrell, Ogden Police Dept.
    Shot in stomach, fragments in face; in critical condition
  • Michael Rounkles, Ogden Police Dept.
    Shot in leg; in critical condition

"As much as he's a decorated officer, he's much more of a decorated man, just in general," Natalie said.

Gov. Gary Herbert visited McKay-Dee Hospital Wednesday and met with the family members of the other officers involved in the shooting. On behalf of the citizens of Utah, he expressed his gratitude and said thoughts and prayers are with them.

"I think for most of the state, we woke up this morning and found out about the shooting, and it was just a shocking thing. It's something we don't expect," Herbert said. "And the magnitude of six officers shot, and one killed, is just hard to digest."

Natalie Burrell said the officers' families are a close-knit group; and the fact that one of them has died hurts, and will for a long time.

"My heart really goes out to Francom and his family. The Strike Force is like a family, and all of them … my heart goes out to all of them. They're all friends, they're like brothers," she said.


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Keith McCord


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