At just 9 years old, Noah was enjoying breakfast with his mother at Denny’s when he noticed a lone police officer sitting nearby.
Right away, Noah felt a surge of anxiety and knew he wanted to do something to show his appreciation, but he wasn’t quite sure what.
After sharing his observation with his mother, Noah began to come up with a plan.
As a child, he had always dreamt of becoming a police officer, so he asked his mother for permission to go over and say hello to Officer Eddie Benitez. With her approval, Noah mustered up the courage to approach the officer.
However, when Noah got closer to Officer Benitez, his nerves got the best of him and he couldn’t find the words to speak. But after a few minutes, Noah came up with a fresh strategy that would surely make the officer’s day.
Noah decided to use some of the money he had saved from his birthday to buy Officer Eddie’s breakfast. His mother, Amanda, signaled the waitress and explained their plan. After they paid the bill, Noah left a note on the receipt and picked it up, heading towards Officer Benitez.
When Officer Benitez saw Noah approaching with the receipt, he was curious about what was going on. But as soon as he read Noah’s heartfelt note, he couldn’t help but leap out of his seat and pose for a photo with his new young fan.
Noah’s note on the receipt said, “I want to be you when I grow up. Thank you for your service, Noah.” The impact of Noah’s gesture was so profound that Officer Eddie Benitez has carried that note with him every day since.
Eddie shared his gratitude for Noah’s kind act, saying, “It meant everything. It meant that I’m supposed to wake up every morning and put on his uniform and go out there and do what I do. You know? It means that I need to keep trying to be a good example to all these young guys.”
The heartwarming story touched the hearts of many, including the Lakeland Police Department, who posted a photo of Noah and Eddie on their Facebook page. This positive response has only strengthened Noah’s desire to become a police officer.
Let’s take a moment to appreciate Noah’s sweet and thoughtful way of honoring our police force! If you agree, don’t hesitate to click that “Like” button.