A hero among us: a tale of faith and inspiration

3 Comments 06 March 2012

By Kassem Sleiman and Kutaiba Alrefaai
Unis Middle School

Ron Sanders served 23 years as a police officer and then homicide detective in Detroit.

As a detective, he solved the major case of a serial killer who killed 11 women in Detroit. No other detective could make the man confess to all the murders of these women.

Sanders gained enormous fame and for a limited time was considered a celebrity. He said there was even plans for a movie about his life and the idea that Denzel Washington would play him.

Then, tragedy struck.

Ron Sanders at the Wayne Counhty Port Authority for an event to sign copies of his book.

Sanders suffered a devastating stroke on May 22, 1993.The day of his stroke he was vacationing in Cancun, Mexico.

Sanders wrote in his book, “Concerned, but Not Consumed,” that the night of his stroke he suffered the worst headache of his life.

Sanders was at a birthday celebration for his good friend and took a small sip of champagne, then immediately felt dizzy. He was rushed to an emergency hospital.

He had suffered a stroke affecting both sides of his brain and portions of his brain stem.

The stroke almost killed him. At times, Sanders wished he were dead. He laid in bed without any abilities whatsoever. He couldn’t walk, talk, or move. He was depressed all the time.

To Sanders, there was no hope of things getting better. He had to stay at the hospital for a very long time. With speech therapy and physical therapy, he began to talk and walk again. “I hated it,” he said.

Sanders said he had faith in God the whole time.

“It was a miracle I survived the stroke,” he said. He also said “The doctor with 30 years of experience said she’s never seen a patient with the severity of the stroke I had survived”.

Secondly, he said “that not only did I have a stroke on both sides of my brain but the brain stem.”

The stroke left Sanders with speech problems and he had to use a walker for balance. After years of therapy and hard work, he started to balance himself without a walker and began to speak more clearly.

Sanders said he was supported by his church congregation, friends, family, coworkers, and nursing staff.

We asked Mr. Sanders what advice he would give to the next generation of homicide detectives. He said, “first, always remember if it were not for the grace of God, it could be you sitting on the other side of the interrogation table. Second, realize your investigation is actually speaking for the victim (deceased) and their family. Lastly, during your investigation, don’t take shortcuts, but cross every T and dot every I in the homicide investigation.”

Sander’s devastating stroke affected him in many good and bad ways and he never lost faith.

For information, visit Sanders’ website.

Your Comments

3 Comments so far

  1. Kincaid says:

    Wonderful job boys! Your work keeps getting better and better!

  2. Ron Sanders says:

    The authors of this article. I call them Mr. K. (Kutaiba) & Mr. K. (Kassem). (LOL) The 2 Mr. K.’s wrote an excellent article. I enjoyed immensely assisting them with compiling information for the article. I am both honored and humbled, that they considered me a hero. However, I feel I was just doing my job.

    Further, I learned through adversity anyone can “OVERCOME” any challenge in life, by having a personal relationship, with a higher authority. Thank you, ever so much.

    God bless, love & be well,
    Ron Sanders
    P. S. Again, I want to personally give, “CONGRATULATIONS” to the 2 Mr. K.’s!

  3. Mustapha Jaber says:

    Incredible story of how one man never gave up and believed he could do it.My grandpa once had a stroke which damaged the right side of his brain, unfortunately my grandpa couldn’t make it.This man Ron Sanders is a great man and taught me a valuable lesson to never give up and always have faith within.Anyone he believes he could do it is guranteed to and thank you.

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Unis Middle School

Unis School serves grades K-8 in the Dearborn Public School District. The school principal is Heyam Alcodray. These are its beliefs about education:

  • A student's highest potential includes improvements academically, artistically, emotionally and socially.
  • Student achievement requires a cooperative effort among parents, teachers and the community to provide encouragement and reinforce core values.
  • Good instruction is assessment-driven, outcomes-based, active, and engaging.
  • Effective instruction touches the world of each student providing for different learning styles and needs.
  • Education is a life-long process that prepares students to be successful, contributing citizens in a changing world.

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