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BECK: Power still found in prayer
Taylor Beck
Taylor Beck

Covington Police Chief Stacey Cotton nearly brought me to tears Tuesday afternoon, and he didn’t even realize it.

He spoke briefly at the end of our weekly Rotary Club of Covington meeting, but I was not able to attend in person. Rather, I was listening in via Zoom.

Stacey requested prayers for one of the law enforcement officers that was shot this week in Carroll County. He said the officer was shot in the head, which brought back memories of Matt Cooper’s situation a couple of years ago.

That’s when he reminded us all of a simple truth: there’s power in prayer.

Stacey got emotional when he recalled the first time he ever saw Cooper drive a car after his recovery from a gunshot to the head. He and others, if they were to tell you the truth, probably didn’t think it would ever be possible.

“If you don’t believe the power of prayer is real, seeing Matt Cooper today ought to change your mind.”

Stacey said the officer shot in Carroll County will likely have a long road ahead of him, similar to Cooper’s journey. He said the Coopers were made aware of the situation and would likely reach out to the officer’s family if they haven’t already.

I’ve heard plenty of people dismiss the idea of prayer — from high profile politicians to everyday people like you and me. 

In the midst of a rash of gun violence, it’s common to hear someone say, “I don’t want your prayers. I want gun control.” Some, frankly, just don’t believe.

But I say otherwise.

Prayer has changed many lives, not just for the Matt Coopers of the world. It’s changed my life, and it can change yours, too.

Eli and Opal Beck celebrate birthdays

As you read this, I’ll be surrounded by family celebrating my children’s birthdays. 

My son, Eli Duskin, turned 2 years old April 9. My daughter, Opal Mae, turns 1 year old April 22.

Sometimes I wonder what life would be like without those two. 

But honestly, I’d rather not find out.

Taylor Beck is editor and publisher of The Covington News. He may be reached at