Police officers were on hand at a birthday party in a community in Richmond, Virginia, last week, and the actions of one officer in particular have gone viral.
Instead of singing the traditional "Happy Birthday" song, those gathered at the function hosted by the local non-profit group Celebrate RVA opted to sing the hit song "Let It Go" from the Disney movie, "Frozen." However, the kids weren't alone in belting out the tune. Leaning against a pole, Officer Jonathan Natoli joined in.
"The kids seemed a little shy about singing out loud, so I just started singing out loud and figured if I was doing it, they'd do it," Natoli told WWBT-TV.
The video of the singing, posted to Celebrate RVA's page, has more than 121,000 views and more than 1,300 shares.
Scenes from yesterdays party....meet one of our favorite officers from Richmond Police Department #RVA #ThrowTheConfetti #celebrateRVA #CommunityPolicingPosted by Celebrate RVA on Saturday, December 19, 2015
Natoli said he's glad for the positive message his department is sending the community.
"We just go and have fun and interact in a positive way with the kids, letting them know there's a good officer out there, and good police department that they can be with and interact with," Natoli said.
James Mercante, a spokesman for the police department, told TheBlaze that the officers truly care about the community and that this story is one of countless others the department shares on social media.
"These are officers, they're out in every neighborhood every day so it's not surprising that we have these interactions," Mercante said.
Aleta Braxton, a parent of a child at the event, said she felt "awesome" and was almost in tears over the kindness the officers displayed toward the children at the party.
"I was surprised," Ameyah Walton, 10, told WWBT of the video's popularity.
Natoli said he is not a trained singer and was happy that the video did not pick up much of his voice, but regardless, his church is now recruiting him to join the choir.
Richmond Police Department's Facebook page is filled with photos and stories of officers' engagement in the community. A recent post highlighted Officers Roger Griffith and Christopher Saunders who pulled over a woman with a headlight out. After the woman said she was unsure of how to change the light, the officers gave her instructions and did it for her.
According to its website, Celebrate RVA is a non-profit organization with a mission to give disadvantaged children birthday parties in a "safe and fun environment." Mercante said that the organization often provides parties for children who might not otherwise have one.