In tragedy, a community comes together
Just before 10 a.m. on Nov. 16, 2000, a heavily armed bank robber entered the FirstStar bank at 69th Street and France Avenue wearing a ski mask and a long leather coat. He calmly raised his gun, cocked it and demanded the teller to fill it with money. He moved to the next teller and repeated the instructions and then left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash.
Edina officer Michael Blood, on patrol just blocks away, responded first to the 911 call. The suspect ambushed him and opened fire with a high-powered, semiautomatic rifle. Blood's squad car was struck with more than a dozen rounds. As Blood sought cover, he was shot again and fell to the ground. While he lay on his stomach on the parking lot playing dead, the suspect shot him two more times before fleeing the scene.
Private citizens, city public works employees, paramedics, firefighters, dispatchers and police officers all worked together to stop the violent career bank robber and save the critically-wounded officer.
Their heroism was honored by city, state and national groups. But the greatest reward for police and fire departments was the overwhelming support shown by the community.
School children made get well cards, churches offered prayers, residents raised money for injured officer Michael Blood, and many stopped officers on patrol to give thanks for their service.
And Edina residents showed up in force to give blood for Blood. Here is the story by the numbers:
Image credits: Edina Historical Society collection - photo of Mike Blood and bank robber's gun, cards on loan from Mike Blood. Blood donor photo from the PeerFit blog, surgery photo from Shutterstock.
Where were you when you heard that a bank robber shot an Edina police officer? Were you one of those who answered the call for blood donations? Did you create a card for "Hero Mike Blood"? (Those kids are now high school graduates now.) Tell us your story by commenting here or emailing me.
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Jennifer Adam is the Executive Director of the Edina Historical Society. She welcomes your contributions. Comment on a post or send an email (see below). Traditional mail, of course, can also be sent to:
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