A Dallas police officer who nearly died from a gunshot wound to the head 34 years ago is finally retiring from his police job.
Ron Iscaro's police career did not work out as he first expected.
"All my life, from 5 or 6 years old, I always wanted to become a cop," he said. "That was my identity, to help other people."
He was a 23-year-old fresh recruit patrolling West Dallas in August 1983 when a woman waived down the squad car in which Iscaro and his partner were riding. She said a man was holding another woman hostage. The officers could see the victim inside a small house.
"The girl was tied up in a chair and he was circling her with a shotgun," Iscaro said.
The man spotted the officers outside and came outside with that shotgun, yelling at officers and threatening to kill them.
"He shot me as I shot him," Iscaro said. "He blew a quarter of the right side off my head."
The suspect was killed by police gunfire.
Iscaro had a very long recovery ahead but stuck with the police job, expecting to eventually return to patrol.
"I was thinking within two years I'd be out on the street," he said.
His recovery left him fit only for desk or detective work, but he remained dedicated to police decades longer.
"At the time I had a steady income, relatively recession proof, and a great retirement," he said.
Iscaro was assigned to Northeast Dallas Investigations when he reached 35 years of service and retired this month. The Texas House honored him with a resolution recognizing his sacrifice and commitment. His retirement is also timed to receive benefits in place before changes that are currently pending in the Texas Legislature.
Iscaro is not planning to give up give up service as a retiree. He intends to help his church and disabled military veterans. He recently joined the Dallas Police Choir and intends to continue singing with the group. His first solo performance is planned at his retirement party May 24 at Dallas Police Association Headquarters.