Officer Helps Homeless Man Struggling to Shave Over Street Puddle: It's a 'Need to Help People'

A Detroit police officer is being praised for going “way above and beyond” to help a homeless man he saw shaving over a puddle last week.

Officer Jeremy Thomas, with the Detroit Police Department, was walking near Comerica Park where he came across 62-year-old Stanley Nelson struggling to rinse his razor in a puddle while shaving, according to WXYZ.

“He had shaving cream on his hands, his coat, his face, his eyes,” Thomas told the station of Nelson, adding that Nelson assured the officer he would leave the area. “I said, ‘No, do you need some help?’ And he turned around blindly and said, ‘Yes, thank you. God bless.’ “

Jill Metiva Schafer just happened to be walking by at the time and snapped photos of the encounter. She shared the images on Facebook, writing, “What a great Detroit cop!! This is right outside Comerica park. The game was a rainout but this officer went way above and beyond to help this man shave!!!💙🖤”

Stanley Nelson (left) with Officer Jeremy Thomas of the Detroit Police Department

The photo has been shared more than 100 times.

“I took the picture because I thought it was such a kind, unselfish thing for an officer to do,” Schafer told Good Morning America.

Schafer said she saw Nelson and Thomas after leaving a Detroit Tigers game. But Thomas said he had no clue someone was watching his exchange with Nelson.

“Just the need to help people,” Thomas told WXYZ. “I was a volunteer firefighter before this, and it’s just been something I like to do, help people.”

Thomas said he saw a woman and her daughter give nelson a razor, shaving cream and a bottle of water. Soon after, a worker at the park told Thomas the man was trying to use water from the puddle to shave.

“Just know that this could be you at any day,” Thomas said. “Nobody is better than the other person. They may be in a better position in life, but use that opportunity to take care of somebody else when you can.”

As for Nelson, he told WXYZ that he’s grateful for Thomas’ act of kindness.

“What he did for me, that was alright,” Nelson said. “I really appreciate that because, you know, I’m going through my thing and I feel bad about myself, you know, but I’m gonna be alright.”


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