A witness snapped a photo of a touching moment between a Texas police officer and a homeless man that has caught the attention of many on Facebook. Corporal Jeremy Walsh with the Odessa Police Department was later identified as the officer kneeling next to the homeless man and giving him a pair of boots and a bottle of water. KWES NewsWest 9 spoke to Cpl. Walsh who simply said, “It seemed like the right thing to do. I had something that somebody else needed that I didn’t need.”
The officer knew the homeless man, Anthony Young, who goes by A.J., from his patrol. Walsh knew that A.J. had a history of frostbite on his feet and noticed that he was no longer wearing his worn out steel-toed Dockers. “They ended up falling apart on him. Well, I have some, some boots that I never wear because they're a size too small and they're just collecting dust in my closet,” Cpl. Walsh said.
As reported by Odessa American online, Ronda Fox snapped the photo when she saw Walsh taking the boots from the trunk of his police car. Her family owns a nearby restaurant and she also knows A.J., describing him as a good person who doesn’t ask for money and rarely accepts handouts. Ronda posted the photo on Facebook never expecting it to become so popular on social media. But when her friend shared it, the photo and the story behind it, took off.
After the officer’s caring gesture, A.J. was grateful and reluctantly accepted the boots, only under the condition that he would pay Cpl. Walsh back in the future. The officer recalled, "A.J. had to, you know, he had to do a little back and forth…I saw him today. He said the same thing, 'I haven't forgotten about you.'…I said, 'It wouldn't be a gift if we were trading bro.'"