A police officer in Roeland Park, Kansas, made headlines after going above and beyond to assist a man who’d been making a five-hour commute on foot to work every day.
Officer Zach Stamper received a 911 call on on Sept. 22 about a suspicious person at a local park, prompting him to investigate, Fox 4 reported. When he arrived at the park, he was greeted by Samuel Meixueiro — whose story shocked him.
Meixueiro wasn’t at all suspicious — in fact, he’d stopped at Sweeney Park in the middle of an hours-long walk to work simply to take a break.
“It's a five-to-six hour walk. I've been doing it so I can keep my job,” Meixueiro told Fox 4.
The man told Stamper that he’d recently lost his home and had been sleeping in a church. With his job in Kansas City, he walked to work out of necessity.
“As I told him my story he started loosening up," Meixueiro said of his encounter with Stamper. "Started realizing I'm not a vagrant. I have a job. I'm doing the best I can."
The officer then gave him a ride to work, though Meixueiro's story affected him so much that he knew he had to do more.
“I was like, wow. My commute, I drive to work and it's done. I couldn't imagine spending five hours a day traveling back and forth to work, let alone on foot,” Stamper said.
A half-hour later, the generous officer returned with a bike and a duffel bag for Meixueiro to carry his things in.
“I cried. I couldn't believe it. Things are so hard for me right now. Any kind of help is just a blessing,” Meixueiro said. “Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”
The two exchanged phone numbers, and plan to stay in touch with one another as Meixueiro continues to work towards stability in his life.
“It made my day," Stamper said. "It made my career."