A father’s Facebook post praising the kind actions of a police officer went viral when the cop discovered him and his family in a needful situation.
Robert Wood and his family were making a difficult drive.
They had left their home in Alaska for a new one in Eugene, Oregon. That meant making a long and tiring drive with two kids — 4-year-old Samuel and 2-year-old Logan — as well as Wood’s pregnant wife.
The family hadn’t found housing yet.
Instead, they pulled over into a small park to spend the night, hoping they would be able to save some money. That was when they were noticed by a police officer.
Lt. David Natt was doing a local patrol when he spotted the car.
“At 10:30 a police officer rolled up and shone his spotlight in my car,” Wood posted on Facebook. “He walked over and I asked what I could do for him and if there was a problem. He told me the park closed at 11 p.m. and that I couldn’t stay there. I had my 4-year-old curled up sleeping on my lap and my 2-year-old was sleeping on my wife’s lap in the passenger seat. When he saw the kids, he told me that he was going to buy us a hotel room.”
Wood protested, saying they had a savings and wouldn’t feel right taking advantage of the officer’s charity.
But Natt was insistent.
“He told me he’d like to do it anyways and that the police department had a fund just for situations like this,” wrote Wood.
Even though the Woods had money of their own, they were intensely grateful to the police officer who made such a kind gesture.
Sleeping with kids in the car isn’t easy. They were grateful to have a comfortable bed and a safe place to stay while they prepared for a new home for themselves.
Wood said that Natt’s actions had humbled him and inspired him to reach out to others with similar generosity and kindness.
After their brief stay in the hotel, they were able to stay with friends for a period while they looked for a permanent home in Eugene.
Natt explained that the Eugene Police Department has a private fund made for them by the University Fellowship Church specifically for the purpose of helping people in need. He used this fund to help pay for the Wood family’s hotel room.
Although he was touched by Wood’s Facebook post, Natt explained that his actions were all a part of the oath he had sworn to help others.
“It’s part of our three-word motto: protect, serve and care,” said Natt. “And you have to take each one of those, in all circumstances, to heart.”
Even if it wasn’t a big deal to Natt, it was a moment the Wood family will never forget: how a police officer reached out to them when they were in need.
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