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White Officer’s Friendship With 73-Year-Old African-American Widow Stuns Community, Internet

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Reported by Nigel Boys

With all the negative attention in the media about abusive police officers, it’s refreshing to hear about a white Texas police officer who has befriended and helped a 73-year-old African-American widow who lives alone.

Officer John Holder went to the home of Dorothy Shepard six months ago in what was supposed to be a routine wellness check after she had undergone knee and back surgeries. What neither of them expected to happen, was that six months later, the pair would often be together going shopping when Holder is off duty.

According to Shepard, she had met and knew many police officers before, but was not expecting one to be as kind as Holder. She added that when they first met, she just kept talking to him and he was very attentive to all her ramblings.

When Holder left Shepard that day, he offered her his cell phone number and told her to call him if she needed any more help. As it happened, she needed to go somewhere the next day, so she let him know and he turned up. From then on, the two have often been together going to doctor’s appointments or just to the local store.

On a recent trip to the Walmart store in DeSoto, a shopper spotted the unlikely pair as they braved the Thanksgiving crowds to buy groceries. The shopper took a photo of them as Holder pushed the shopping cart with Shepard walking by his side.

Although Holder had not told the DeSoto Police Department about his communal activities during his free time, when they found out about the photo, they posted it on their Facebook page.

In just a few days, the photo had received over 700 likes, the pair was interviewed by WFAA-8, and the picture has since gone worldwide and has been seen in Australia, Bulgaria, Belgium, Canada, Egypt, Guatemala, Ireland, Slovenia and the United Kingdom.

Speaking about all the thanks and appreciation he has received since the photo was published, Holder said he feels blessed. He added “I thought it was pretty amazing, all the great comments on there, since law enforcement is often seen in a negative light.”

Shepard said that she is very thankful that it was Officer Holder who knocked on her door six months ago. She added “I know police officers, but I never expected him to be that kind … he’s just tremendous.”


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