While eating breakfast at a diner in Lakeland, Florida, nine-year-old Noah was stunned when he saw a lonely police officer eating the first meal of the day. Noah did not like seeing the police officer in the diner like that and knew he wanted to do something about it. But the little boy was very nervous. He didn’t know what to do about what he was seeing. The officer was intimidating in his uniform and with his firearm. And Noah was just a little kid.
But Noah refused to let fear dictate his actions. He told his mother about his plan, and she encouraged him to act. Because Noah did not want the police officer to feel alone, he wanted to make sure the cop knew that he, a nine-year-old boy, had his back no matter what.
But little did Noah know but what he was about to do would leave the police officer in a stunned state. And he would jump out of his chair eager to act. Noah had a big impact on the protector, and this made his mother very proud.
Noah has a dream to become a police officer one day. And when he saw the heroic copy eating his breakfast at the Florida diner, Noah knew that this was his chance to express his love and admiration for the cop. He told his mother, Amanda Cantin, that he wanted to greet the police, who was Officer Eddie Benitez.
Of course, Cantin was eager to allow her son this privilege.
They were at the local Denny’s diner because it was ‘bring your child to work day’ and Cantin was showing her son the ropes of adult life.
But when he was granted permission, Noah froze. His fear started rising, and he did not know what to do. Instead of speaking to the cop, Noah decided to use the money he had been saving from his birthday to pay for Officer Benitez’s breakfast. It was a generous move for a young boy without much himself.
With the new plan, Noah flagged down the waitress and told her that he was buying the cop breakfast. And after he paid for the officer, Noah wrote a special note on the receipt.
“I want to be you when I grow up. Thank you for your service.”
With the marked receipt in his hand, Noah timidly walked over to Officer Benitez. He dropped the note on the counter in front of him and turned to leave. But the officer snatched it up and quickly processed it. He jumped to his feet before Noah could escape.
Amanda said, “He didn’t understand why this little boy was walking down there with his tab. His face was very shocked.”
Because Noah was so generous, it inspired Officer Benitez. Now he carries the boy’s note in his pocket to remind himself who he has vowed to protect and serve.
“It meant everything. It meant that I’m supposed to wake up every morning and put on this uniform and go out there and do what I do. You know? It means that I need to keep trying to be a good example to all these young guys.”