A North Texas police officer came to a mother’s aid this week in a stressful situation every parent has experienced in public.
Behind his angelic smile, there are moments any parent can relate to.
“He’s two,” said mom Emily.
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She asked NBC 5 not to publish her last name or her son’s name out of privacy concerns.
One morning this week, her little guy was just having a bad day.
“I was kind of having to drive him around all day to run errands,” she said. “He was tired. He didn’t get to play much that morning.”
Mom and son were in line at the UPS store where a mini-meltdown did not go unnoticed.
“He started to be a little turkey,” said Darren Burkhart. “I have kids, so he was being a little rambunctious, so I went over there and just started playing with him.”
Burkhart is a 25-year veteran at the Midlothian Police Department, where he has worked part-time in the past. He is also currently a part-time firefighter.
“He immediately comes up to us and started to make my son laugh,” she said. “He [son] really likes police cars and sirens.”
The officer then asked the boy if he wanted to go see his police car once they were done inside.
“He said yeah,” said Burkhart.
Mom captured the officer allowing the boy to sit in the car and sound the siren.
They posed for a photograph and the woman’s son promised he would be a good little boy the rest of the day.
“It just lit my son up,” said Emily. “He talked about the policeman and the police car the rest of the day.”
Emily shared the kind moment on Facebook. Many people praised the well-known and humble officer.
Asked why he stepped in to help the stranger, Burkhart said, “Just like any other normal officer would do. We’re all like that. See something bad, try to make it good.”
Little did Burkhart know he had just helped a fellow ‘hero.’
“I have been a nurse now for almost six years,” said Emily.
She’s a pediatric nurse working 13-hour shifts amid COVID-19, while pregnant.
“I go to work everyday kind of scared of what would the risks be to my unborn baby,” she said. “I love what I do, and I didn’t want to give it up.”
Both hope this simple interaction can teach us all something special.
“I think it can just remind us that the little things are important,” said Emily.
Burkhart said he’s seen a lot of good in Midlothian neighborhoods as neighbors help each other.
“We’re in a time of life that I never dreamed in my life I would see,” he said. “And I think any little gesture that we do to each other goes a long way.”