An act of kindness in the mean streets of New York

The streets of New York are busy with the hustle bustle of urban life. But, like so many big cities, those streets are also full of human pain and misery.

On November 14, 2012, a tourist — Jennifer Foster of Florence, Arizona — witnessed someone reduce that misery by a notch, with an act of kindness.

An NYPD officer gave a shoeless homeless man with blistered bare feet a pair of warm winter boots.

Foster took this photo with her cell phone, unbeknown to the officer. The photo has since gone viral.

Liz Klimas reports for The Blaze, Nov. 29, 2012, that Foster is the communications director for the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office in Arizona. This is her account of what she saw:

“Right when I was about to approach [the homeless man], one of your officers came up behind him. The officer said, ‘I have these size 12 boots for you, they are all-weather. Let’s put them on and take care of you.’ The officer squatted down on the ground and proceeded to put socks and the new boots on this man. The officer expected NOTHING in return and did not know I was watching. I have been in law enforcement for 17 years. I was never so impressed in my life. I did not get the officer’s name. It is important, I think, for all of us to remember the real reason we are in this line of work. The reminder this officer gave to our profession in his presentation of human kindness has not been lost on myself or any of the Arizona law enforcement officials with whom this story has been shared.”

The police officer is Lawrence DePrimo. The photo has made it onto news sites and blogs around the world, as well as posted on the NYPD’s official Facebook page, which has received over 315,000 “likes” and shared more than 74,000 times. According to the New York Times, as of yesterday evening, the pic has been viewed by more than 1.6 million people.

Thank you, Officer DePrimo for reminding us there is still good in this world.

~Eowyn

8 responses to “An act of kindness in the mean streets of New York

  1. God bless Officer DiPrimo and the man who needed shoes.

  2. There is still hope for the US! Officer DePrimo represents all that is good.

  3. WOW! I just came home and found this has been put up. I’ve not heard or seen anything so Christ-like in my life! [nearly 70 now]. How many of would ‘stoop so low?’ All best, and God bless, J

  4. Saw this last night on FOX news and felt heart touched. TIME mag needs to post Officer DePrimo as “Person Of The Year”. I understand that this has gone viral and I mean VIRAL! This has more meaning to mankind then any of the knuckled people that Time Mag is looking at for this honor. I am writing TIME and requesting that they consider Officer DePrimo and request help from all to see that this happens. This is mankind at its best.
    Oh, he also did this with his OWN money and I’m sure that those kind of boots cost a nickle or two.

  5. Reblogged this on Biblical Times News and commented:
    This wonderful act of kindness during the Christmas season made the Heavens smile and restored millions of people’s faith in the better side of human nature. What a wonderful gift for everyone who is so weary of never-ending bad news.

  6. Thank you Dr. Eowyn for this beautiful post. I have a real place in my heart for those people who are homeless. St. Vincent de Paul, who loved the poor and the homeless said, “Be kind, be kind, be kind, and you will be a saint.”

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