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‘I couldn’t even save him’: Heartbroken family remembers off-duty officer shot, killed in Blawnox

BLAWNOX BOROUGH, Pa. — The parents of an off-duty officer who was shot and killed in Blawnox on Sunday night told Channel 11 that they’re experiencing a parent’s worst nightmare.

RELATED: Man charged with homicide for shooting death of off-duty Oakdale police officer

Officer Chuckie Stipetich, 23, was shot just outside his family’s home.

“The last words he said to me was, ‘Dad, I’m shot, Dad, I’m shot,’” said Charles Stipetich, the officer’s father. “There was nothing I could do. I couldn’t even save him. And I had to watch him die on the sidewalk.”

“I never even got to tell him I loved him,” said Branden Stipetich, Chuckie’s brother.

Chuckie Stipetich’s family shared his story with 11 News.

“By the time he was 9 years old, he told me he wanted to be a Marine,” his father remembered.

His family said he reached that goal right after graduating from Fox Chapel High School, but it didn’t stop there. Stipetich also wanted to be a police officer.

“Chuckie was probably the best kid you’re ever going to meet. He was never in trouble,” his father said.

His family said he wanted to help his community. Stipetich had just graduated from the police academy and was hired at the Oakdale Police Department.

He was shot to death in a road rage incident while off-duty less than two weeks into the job.

“He would take a bullet for anybody, and he proved it. He took one for me,” his father, Charles Stipetich, said.

Now, his family is left in shock.

But in all of this, they’re looking for the silver lining. Their son continues to help strangers.

“Now after death, he’s an organ donor, so he’ll be helping others,” his mother, Deena Stipetich, said.

The family has one request for the community in honor of their son.

“He wanted to be a police officer,” Charles Stipetich said. “So I’m asking all the police out there to please attend his funeral. It would be appreciated.”

Stipetich shared this message to his son’s shooter.

“Someday he’s gonna have to answer to this. He’s gonna have to answer to his maker.”

So far, the family said they’ve been receiving a lot of support from friends and family. There is also a GoFundMe page to help with funeral expenses.

Kevin McSwiggen has been charged with homicide following the shooting. He was also shot in the incident. There is no word at this time on his condition.

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