An officer with the Independence Police Department in Missouri was able to discover the identity of a teenager who was caught on camera helping a woman in need. The officer tracked down the teen so he could thank him.
What are the details of the incident?
The police department sought the young man after he went to great lengths to shield an elderly woman from rain in a grocery store parking lot.
A photo of the young man went viral after Officer Joe Holt snapped the picture and shared it to Facebook.
According to WJRT-TV, Holt — who was sitting in his own vehicle in the parking lot at the time — said, "It was pouring down rain, and all the sudden, I see this teenager running across the parking lot, taking his coat off."
The outlet reported that Holt, clearly moved, followed the teen back to his mother's van and told her what her son had just done for the woman.
"I was just totally thrilled by this," he said, and revealed the bonding that took place between him and the teen's mother.
"She teared up pretty good," Holt said. "It was a moment between the both of us. I mean, I teared up a little bit. I'm a parent as well. So, I told her that I was very impressed with him and that he should be proud."
Holt described the interaction with the teen's mother as moving, according to the original Facebook post as well.
"His mom had no idea what was happening, because she thought she had done something wrong since I was in uniform," Holt said. "I told his mom that she has done amazing with him and I hope and pray he goes places. She started tearing up, because I was a cop and took time out of my day to call him out on what I witnessed."
"With all the hate fueled by color, belief, sexual preference or race ... the only thing this kid cared about was being kind," Holt added.
The officer hopes that other people will be inspired by the young man's actions.
"As much love that kid displayed that day, that kid could go places," he told WJRT. "And I think he could set an example for what society needs to be."
The outlet reported that Holt wants to reward the young man with dinner for his good deed.
"He's the hero. I'm just the photographer in this situation. So it's wherever he wants to go. It's on my dime. So he can pick," Holt said.
The teen can reach out to the Independence Police Department in order to receive his meal with Holt.
"Kiddo If you see me on the street again this guy owes ya a dinner," Holt added. "You ever need anything I will come running to ya."
So what happened then?
According to WTTG-TV, Holt was able to find the young man and his mother and treat them both to dinner.
He shared the update in a follow-up post shared through his department.
A Facebook post from the Independence Police Department read, "We are pleased to announce that Officer Holt was able to find the young man, identified as 14 year old Tyrea, who he witnessed take off his coat to help an elderly lady in a parking lot during a rain storm last week. Fortunately, a family member saw the viral story and called the police department. Officer Holt met up with him and his mother over the weekend and took them both out to dinner."
"Officer Holt said, 'Well this kiddo who I have only known a short time already means the world to me. As promised after finding him I took him out to dinner. He and his wonderful mom Ebony enjoyed some Red Lobster,'" the post concluded.
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