Jane fell into an abusive relationship with her husband after he lost his job. Upon realizing her and her stepdaughter’s lives could be in jeopardy, she mustered up the courage to make a pizza call that would change their lives forever.
Denise worked as a 911 call center respondent. Her father was a police officer, and she’d always hoped she could follow in his footsteps, serving and protecting the community.
While she initially wanted a job in the force, she could never get through the academy’s physical training because of her disability. Denise had had her legs amputated a few years back after a car accident.
After that, she was certain her dream would never come to fruition. However, after her father convinced her to give the 911 call response team a shot, she finally found her place in the force.
Denise’s job was demanding and was definitely not for the faint-hearted. The issues she dealt with on a daily were rather traumatic. Nevertheless, Denise felt she was born to do this and loved every second of her job.
One day, Denise received an odd call at work. In her line of business, she was used to receiving prank calls every other day. And initially, this particular circumstance seemed like exactly that. This wasn’t the first time someone called to order a pizza, but there was something different.
“Hi, my name is Jane. C—could… Could I please get 2 pizzas as soon as possible? Please, I’m desperate!” Jane said in a frightened whisper.
“Sorry, ma’am, I believe you have the wrong number. Goodbye,” Denise replied, about to cut.
“No! Please don’t cut the call!” Jane said desperately.
“Ma’am, if this is a prank, I promise you—” Denise started before Jane interrupted.
“Are you in danger?”
“No… I didn’t make a mistake. This is the pizzeria, and I desperately need 2 pizzas from you,” Jane said. Denise heard the panic in her voice and her sniffles as if she’d been crying. She began to give the situation a second thought.
“Alright, ma’am. I’m sensing that you may not be calling to actually order pizza. I’m going to ask you a couple of questions. Just answer yes or no. Understood?” Denise said calmly.
“Yes,” Jane responded.
“Are you in danger?” Denise asked.
“Yes,” Jane replied.
“Don’t worry. I’m tracking your IP now. Is there anyone else in the room?” Denise asked, typing furiously on the computer, trying to track the IP address.
“Yes. Please make it quick. My daughter and I are starving,” Jane said.
“Okay, so you and your daughter are in danger. Is this a domestic case?” Denise asked, opening her notepad and jotting notes.
“Yes. P—Please deliver the pizza as soon as possible,” Jane replied.
“Okay. Just stay calm, Jane. So, it’s a man?” Denise asked.
“Yes,” Jane said.
“Is he armed? Is he alone?” Denise asked.
“Who are you talking to? Hang up!” the man shouted.
“Yes… And, yes… Please, we are hungry,” Jane said softly.
“Alright. Just hang in there, Jane. We are almost done, and we have your location. Does your house have a back entrance?” Denise asked.
“No, just the front door,” Jane said. Then, suddenly, Denise heard a man yelling on the phone.
“Who are you talking to? Hang up!” the man shouted.
” I was just getting pizza for—” Jane started before a sharp knock sounded over the phone then it cut.
“Hello? Jane? Jane, are you still there?” Denise asked, but the phone had been dropped.
Fortunately, Denise had already located their address and had a team on their way to Jane. The brigade team arrived at the house shortly after Jane had cut the phone. They arrived just in the nick of time too.
They kicked the door to find Jane’s husband drunk. Meanwhile, Jane and her daughter hid in the next room, weeping bitterly. The place was a mess, with beer bottles and pizza boxes everywhere.
The brigade arrested Jane’s husband on the spot and ushered Jane and her daughter to the police station. Jane always knew the requirement of her job and tried not to get too attached.
But something about this case made her want to inquire further. All she wanted to know was that Jane and her little girl were okay.
As fate would have it, Jane requested to speak with Denise, hoping she could thank her personally. One of Denise’s detective friends handling Jane’s case reached out to Denise, and she scheduled a meeting with Jane.
Jane and Denise met for lunch. Jane even came with her daughter, Matilda. Jane and Matilda were both very grateful for Denise’s help. Denise was just grateful that they were both safe.
Jane explained that things weren’t always like that with her husband. They had married several years back. Matilda was Jane’s husband’s daughter, and she became her own after they married. Denise learned that before he became a tyrant in their home, he was pretty normal.
However, after losing his job, he started to drink heavily, and his behavior changed. He started not treating Jane and Matilda right. By the time things got terrible, Jane truly saw Matilda as her own child and could not just up and leave the relationship.
A week ago, he saw Jane talking to a man at the grocery store and completely lost it. He locked Jane and Matilda at home and did not let them out.
Jane’s story touched Denise deeply, and she promised to help however she could. In the end, she didn’t have to. Jane’s husband was arrested, and the court denied him his parental rights. Jane took sole custody of Matilda and loved her as her own.
Jane and Matilda underwent therapy together, and after a couple of months, with the help of their new friend, Denise, they were able to piece their life back together again.
What can we learn from this story?
Sometimes you have to make a difficult decision to save yourself and your family. Jane had to decide to make the difficult decision that would separate her and Matilda from a dire situation. While it wasn’t easy, it worked out in the end.
Sometimes, be open to giving people the benefit of the doubt and hearing them out. If Denise had decided to sum up Jane’s call as just another prank, their circumstances could have ended fatally. Fortunately, she gave Jane a second listen and finally heard her plea for help.
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