PHOENIX — A distant photo delivered a powerful message on social media after a watchful citizen witnessed a Phoenix police officer hold the hand of an elderly man outside of a Phoenix mall on Tuesday.
“I saw the man in the rearview mirror of my patrol car while in the parking lot and he approached the window looking for help,” Officer Joseph Mayfield told KTAR News. “He was afraid if he walked too fast he would fall.”
As a result, the 19-year veteran of the Phoenix Police Department took the older gentleman by the hand and helped him get to where he needed to be inside the mall.
“I started to leave and I stopped and thought, if he needed assistance to get here he’s probably going to need assistance to get back so I just waited for him,” Mayfield said.
A citizen saw the whole thing unfold and posted the photo on her Instagram with a caption saying, “Thank you for all you do.”
As the event unfolded, Mayfield was unaware that his picture had been taken and posted to social media. However, now that his random act of kindness has been shared many times over, the police veteran expressed his reaction to the post.
“I would say for me, I think I was doing the normal every thing that anybody would do in that situation,” Mayfield said. “The motto is serve and protect. I don’t think it’s by coincidence that service comes first and protection comes later.”
It turns out shortly after the photo was taken, Mayfield came upon another older couple trying to change a flat tire and stepped into help, KTAR reported.
“Moments like this really speaks volumes for the type of officers we are looking for,” Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said. “We are hiring and if these type of situations speak to anyone out there who wants to be in law enforcement we want them to find the blue in you.”