Lynn Murphy, a homeless mother of four, was reportedly holding a sign asking for help next to a road in Fall River, Massachusetts. When she saw a state trooper vehicle pull up next to her, she expected to be issued a citation or told to leave.
Instead, the officer offered her a meal.
State Trooper Luke Bonin had reportedly noticed Murphy on his way back from court and immediately drove to a nearby restaurant to purchase two meals. He returned and offered Murphy her choice of food.
"I thought he was just going to hand me the meal but when he said, ‘Come around the back, it’s such a beautiful day, we’ll have a picnic,'" Murphy told CBS. " ... It touched my heart."
The two shared a meal and conversation in a curbside picnic.
A witness to the picnic, identified by The Washington Times as Jake Morse, snapped a picture of the trooper sitting on the back of his cruiser while sharing a meal with Murphy.
Morse shared the picture on an area Facebook page.
"And they say chivalry is dead," Morse wrote in the caption. "Much respect."
A third party, unrelated to the incident, reached out to the Massachusetts State Police about the photo, and the police set out to identify the trooper in the picture.
According to the police, Bonin expressed surprise that someone had taken notice and photographed the picnic, emphasizing that he hadn’t intended to receive publicity or praise for the act. He declined to be interviewed by news outlets as well.
The Massachusetts State Police, however, made sure that Bonin’s selflessness did not go unnoticed. They posted the picture on their own Facebook page on May 17.
"Yes, Trooper Bonin, we know you do not want or expect publicity," the Facebook post read. "We know you didn’t want to be noticed, but you were, and the job is proud of you. We commend you for your selfless act, and for 'doing the right thing' for someone less fortunate than most people."
The post has since gone viral, garnering over 125,000 likes and 42,000 shares just one day.