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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — In recent months, there has been an incredible and alarming level of hostility displayed toward law enforcement officials across the nation.
Last year, one police officer was killed in the line of duty somewhere in the nation every three days and 2015 seems on track to meet these tragic figures.
Across the country, the domestic guardians of our lives, liberties and property have been ridiculed, protested and cursed for no other reason than the uniform they wear each day.
This past Saturday, however, a little boy in Morgantown, West Virginia, set an example that the rest of the nation would do well to follow.
While dozens of other children were busy clamoring for the autographs of twenty-year-old student-athletes at Mountaineer Field on the campus of West Virginia University, one little boy named Braedon did something extraordinary — he took his blue and yellow West Virginia football to a group of West Virginia State Troopers tasked with ensuring crowd control and asked for their autographs.
“They were lined up at the bottom of the steps and he was so nervous and he stopped and saluted them all. It melted my heart,” stated his mother, Dreama Crowder Mullins.
According to Mullins, a few minutes after getting the autographs from West Virginia’s finest, Wendell Smallwood, the Mountaineers’ all-star running back passed by and she asked her son if he wanted to get his autograph.
Braedon’s response, “No, mommy, he isn’t a trooper.”
In an era when so many seem to have such a blatant disrespect for the men and women tasked with keeping us secure in our persons and properties, it is refreshing to see the pureness of a single child simply wanting an autograph from his heroes; true heroes, who bravely risk everything — including their own families — for individuals they have never met… many of which show no appreciation or respect.
The Mountaineers may have lost in a heartbreaking overtime finish against Oklahoma State Saturday night, but make no mistake about it, West Virginia won, thanks to the example set by a young boy simply wanting his heroes’ autographs.
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