A 2-year-old girl invited the Texas police officer who saved her life last year for a tea party -- and he attended.
On July 17, Officer Patrick Ray of the Rowlett Texas Police Department joined Bexley for a tea party to celebrate the special bond they share, ABC News reports.
"It was something that I just couldn't turn down because I knew it was going to be really special for her mom and Bexley," Ray said. "I have two boys, so I don't get to do that type of stuff you do with a little girl. She's a sweetheart. She's my best friend."
Ray was the officer who responded to a 911 call placed by Bexley’s father on July 26, 2015, when her lips were blue after playing in the pool with her mom and siblings.
“She went completely limp,” the girl's mother, Tammy Norvell said. “It was more than falling asleep. She just collapsed. I looked in her eyes and she was so distant. We had no clue she had swallowed anything.”
Bexley had swallowed a penny.
"I heard [Ray's] siren and ran out the front door," Tammy said. "He's grabbing her from me and is trying to pry her mouth open with two hands. He did the finger sweep into her esophagus and a penny dropped down into it. That's when we heard the most beautiful sound of her squeaking and coughing and crying."
Ray’s swift actions were caught on his body camera. It took him 27 seconds to save Bexley’s life.
“This is a day that I will celebrate ... because I have her,” Tammy told KTVT of the day Ray saved Bexley’s life.
Tammy hired a professional photographer to capture Ray and Bexley’s special tea party.
“Whenever I do ask my children ‘what do you want to pray for?’ Bexley always says, ‘Officer P Ray. Officer P Ray,’” Tammy said.
Tammy’s son, who also prays for Ray, asked his mother if he was OK after the Dallas police shootings.
“I wasn’t ready for that question from my 5-year-old,” she said.
Tammy hopes the photos she had taken of the tea party will help ease negativity against police officers and show that they have a softer side.
Ray expects to be teased at the station.
“I’m sure I’m probably gonna get a tea set or something,” he said, adding that he will not mind a bit.
“We’re buddies,” he said of Bexley. “I can watch her get married. I can watch her have a family. She could have lost her life that day, and I got super lucky.”