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Crimewatch: Association helps family of fallen officers

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Nearly three months have passed since Austin Police Officer, Jaime Padron, was shot and killed in a North Austin Wal-Mart.

He left behind two daughters and an ex-wife in name only. Amy Padron says they remained best friends.

FOX 7 visited with Amy Padron to see how she is managing.

Padron recalls the early morning hours she found out what happened.

She says she was already awake when her door bell rang in the early morning hours of April 6.

"I saw Chief Acevedo's face and oh, this is not good," she said.

The police chief notifies families in person when an officer dies in the line of duty.

As a law enforcement officer herself, she knows this. No words were needed.

"I just looked at him and I said (shakes head) and he (nods head.) And I knew. And then I kind of took a breath and then I got angry. I said, you're lying and so I went and grabbed my cell phone and tried to call Jaime and of course, there was no answer," Padron said.

Jaime Padron was shot and killed after taking a call at the Wal-Mart near Parmer.

She dreaded what she had to do next.

"How am I suppose to tell my girls cause they were sound asleep and that was the hardest thing I ever had to do, wake them up. I had my 10-year-old and 6-year-old. How do I tell children that their daddy is dead?" she asked. "So I go in. I wake the girls up. I look at Ariana, she asked what's wrong? I'm like, daddy, a bad guy got daddy. And my little one goes, daddy dead? Yes and they just started crying."

Padron says the days that followed were a blur.

While her daughters are visiting grandparents in Wyoming, the single parent is forced to reflect. The memorials, countless visitors are all gone. She describes this time as the real test, learning to go on without Jaime.

The couple's divorce was final in January, but it's obvious, Jaime was and is still the love of her life and vice versa.

"He was at my house pretty much every other day. He was texting and calling every day," said Padron.

She says it's now about taking every day one at a time. Father's Day was a rough time.

The next milestone to get through is Jaime's birthday in July. Padron says it's a day they usually celebrated together.

But she says the women with the Austin Police Spouses Association made things a little easier.

"When all his family from San Angelo showed up and all our friends and co-workers and APD here, they fed everybody," she said. "They also wanted to make sure my girls had a good Easter so there were Easter baskets. They would call and say do you need anything, check on me, check on the girls, they became instant best friends."

Marissa Atkinson is the treasurer of the group.

"That was my 4th funeral to attend on duty. That one was the most unforgiving. Cold. Because others were involved in police chases, or drunk driver through a barricade," said Atkinson.

"We want to be there for the family even if it's a step ahead and before they realize they need anything," said Yvette Chacon, Austin Police Spouses Association secretary.

"And just to think an officer that was that close to us was shot for no reason. I mean he showed up, that's all it took. If it wasn't him, it would have been the next one on scene," said Austin Police Spouses Association president Val Jamie.

APSA is a non profit organization open to all family members of law enforcement. For more information click here.

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