A homeless man in upstate New York got a pleasant surprise when a group of kindhearted police officers decided to give him a makeover.
According to the Rome Police Department in New York, the down-on-his-luck man said that he would love to get a haircut and take a shower, a wish that a group of kind officers was able to fulfill, the New York Post reports. The man, who was identified as Bobby, got a haircut, a shower, and a shave, along with a new wardrobe of donated clothes.
"Bobby left looking like a whole new person and couldn't thank us enough," said the department in a Facebook post.
The department added a series of photos showing Bobby's transformation. At the beginning, the man was in dirty clothes, with long hair and a long, unwashed beard. After the officers helped Bobby, the man was clean shaven, with clean clothes and a new, gelled hairstyle.
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Sgt. Frank Fragapane, Jeff Buckley, and George Gebo helped make the man's wish for a shower and shave come true, after officer Aaron Page met him on the street.
"We're always trying to come up with new ideas how to help and give back to our community," said the officers in a statement, according to WBRC. "Officer Page spearheaded the idea on this one, and it was a great way to help someone who needed a hand."
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Users on social media applauded the officers' kind gesture as the photos gained attention on Facebook.
"That's awesome!" wrote one user. "Helping a person in need shows compassion and it shows your community what great people you are. This man looks so happy."
"That was very nice of [you] police officers to do that," added another user. "That just shows that not all cops are bad cops."
The story even made its way to other countries, according to one user.
"Just read the story here in a German local newspaper," said a German Facebook user in response to the department's post. "That [is] the kind of news we want to read. You did a great job ... You show everyone what protect and care really means. God bless you all and Bobby!"
In another story of police officers being kind to the less fortunate, a transit cop in New York helped a 70-year-old diabetic homeless man in December 2016 by buying him a pair of special compression socks, according to the New York Post.
"It makes me feel great," said the man, Ron Brown, about Officer Frank Rendina's gift. "Someone thinks of me like a person, a human. Not everyone thinks of people like that these days."
Rendina said that he first saw Brown rummaging through garbage, and began to talk with him. He learned that the man was diabetic, and needed expensive socks in order to manage his condition. Rendina said that was when he agreed to buy Brown the socks.
"It was a little strange to see everyone’s reaction to it," said the officer. "I speak to [Ron] on the regular, this wasn't anything out of the ordinary."