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15 FASCINATING FACES OF THE YEAR | John Cebulski of Aurora

by Kristen Kucharski


Each year Glancer Magazine features a distinct group of residents who are doing extraordinary things, making a difference in the lives of others by giving them hope, guidance or inspiration. Each is so talented and has persevered through all that COVID-19 has presented this past year. Their stories will touch your heart and awaken your spirit. Here are Glancer Magazine's 15 Fascinating Faces of 2020.

John Cebulski

AURORA–In a year dominated by COVID-19, riots, and elections, we quickly forget life changing moments that happened just a year earlier such as the Henry Pratt Shooting in Aurora in 2019.

Husband and father of four, avid coach for his children’s’ sports, garden enthusiast, and local league softball player, Officer John Cebulski was first on the scene, taking the back end of the diamond to ensure no one comes from behind as they searched the building that was filled with boxes and crates providing unlimited hiding spots for the shooter. As more shots were fired, the team split and Officer Cebulski turned into a stairway yelling Aurora Police; however, before he could finish the word Aurora - he had been shot - a .40 caliber round went through his knee cap breaking the femur and resting in the back of his knee.

It has been over a year now and he has since retired from Aurora Police Department. When he starts to feel sorry for himself, he recalls the words a priest once told him; ‘if you get depressed, go work at a homeless shelter; that will cure your depression.’ He is continually inspired by all the good he sees even as 32 years of law enforcement attempted to chip away at his innocence.

While 2020 has been a challenging year unlike any other, he also feels it has also been an opportunity to show our children that “while some things in life will be out of your control, you can still adjust your sails and travel bravely on.”

Photos by Mike Catuara

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