POLICEMAN breaks the image of TOUGH GUY
Policemen are often criticized by the public. People don’t like it when they are pulled over even though they may have driven too fast or broken the law in some way. That’s why we call them Officers of the Law. Yet, sometimes the “bad apples” that get on a police force ruin the reputation of the many who do their jobs far beyond the call of duty.
I have often thought how frightening it could be to walk up to a strange car,especially in the middle of the night, not knowing if that person will pull out a gun. It has happened to many policemen who were just doing their job. Some never lived another day. It takes a “tough guy” to meet the challenges. Nevertheless, I was touched by a story of a policeman whose heart-felt empathy broke the image of the police tough guy.
We found out about Officer Larry DePrimo when a tourist saw the policeman on Seventh Avenue near 44th Street in New York City. She snapped the picture shown here where Officer DePrimo encounters a homeless man sitting on the street in cold weather with no shoes.
(A write-up followed in the New York Times by J. David Goodman)
“…The officer, normally assigned to the Sixth Precinct in the West Village, readily recalled the encounter. It was freezing out and you could see the blisters on the man’s feet,” he said in an interview. “I had two pairs of socks and I was still cold.” . ..They started talking; he found out the man’s shoe size: 12. As the man walked slowly down Seventh Avenue on his heels, Officer DePrimo went into a Skechers shoe store at about 9:30 p.m. “We were just kind of shocked,” said Jose Cano, 28, a manager working at the store that night. “Most of us are New Yorkers and we just kind of pass by that kind of thing. Especially in this neighborhood.”
Mr. Cano volunteered to give the officer his employee discount to bring down the regular $100 price of the all-weather boots to a little more than $75. Officer DePrimo has kept the receipt in his vest since then, he said, “to remind me that sometimes people have it worse.”
We at Boyer Writes are certain that Officer DePrimo is a little embarrassed about the publicity that he has gotten for a simple act of kindness. I would say this to him. Thanks for being an example of love and caring, especially at this Christmas season. You did something that you did not think anyone would know but the man, the storekeeper, and you. God sees what we do and sometimes…just sometimes… He rewards us openly. So, “Tough Guy”, keep on being who you are. We need more Officers of the Law just like you. Merry Christmas!