Last week, we all watched in horror as news of another senseless act of violence unfolded. Twelve innocent people were killed when a man opened fire in the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C.
One of those innocent victims was Carroll County resident Richard Michael "Mike" Ridgell. Ridgell, 52, was taken away from his friends and family way too soon, with red flags about the shooter - former Navy reservist Aaron Alexis, 34 - overlooked.
Much like other mass shootings in our nation's history, dangerous and strange behavior wasn't taken as seriously as it should have been. Sometimes it is hard to imagine that your friend or family member would take it to such an extreme, or you just can't bring yourself to admit that it is a possibility. But there are too many cases of the signs being ignored and innocent people getting hurt or killed. It is much better to be proactive with your concern than to be looking back at the faces of those who lost loved ones, realizing you could have helped make a difference.