Levi Russell instills a connection – between a community and its protectors.
The 6-year-old from Watson has done the most simplest of things, such as praying every night for certain law enforcement officers, to raising money for bullet-proof vests for as many professionals as he can.
Russell also always asks his grandparents to pull over when he sees a law enforcement vehicle.
The important thing to note? More often than not, the officers know him by name.
That’s a testament between those who put themselves in harm’s way all the time, for the protection of their community, and a young boy who just wants them to be safe.
So often today, across the country, both sides find themselves at odds for a wide variety of reasons.
Everything from race, to hate, to funding seems to push communities and their protectors further apart.
Here, though, children such as Levi and the students around the parish who interact with school resource officers every day show these men and women in blue that while sometimes the decisions and actions they take may not be popular – the community knows that their presence is necessary.
So, if you see an officer, thank them. If you see Levi, or a specific student interacting with a school resource officer, praise them for that action.
Too often these men and women are beyond stressed with their workload and knowledge that, at any point, an interaction can go south.
It’s paramount to remind them that law enforcement officers are, for the most part, safe in their community – we have their back, too.