On March 27, a man in Ohio called Henrico Police to check on his elderly aunt. The COVID-19 pandemic had just begun and he was worried about the 90-year-old woman.
Four officers responded to her home to ensure she was safe and healthy. When Lillian Zak answered her door, she was surprised to see police. Mrs. Zak is deaf, so officers wrote down their words to explain why they were there.
The Henrico woman was OK but needed groceries. Her daughter, who lives nearby, was sick and couldn’t care for her.
Officers Richard Burruss, Jason Caravaglia, Danielle Foley and Kevin Wire did what they could to help. They asked a neighbor to pick up groceries for Zak.
“One officer took the grocery list to my neighbor to purchase groceries, which he did,” Mrs. Zak explained. “Another officer gave me his telephone number to call him if I need anything and another asked about my diet to be sure I was eating well.”
“The real hero is her neighbor, Bill Taylor,” said Officer Caravaglia. “He just really stepped up to the plate and helped her.”
Mrs. Zak was so pleased by her visit with the Henrico officers that she penned a letter to Police Chief Hum Cardounel.
“These officers were not only helpful but also pleasant, courteous and concerned. Thank you for having such fine, professional police officers in your department,” she wrote.
“It was so sweet of her to take the time to write about our encounter. We were just there to check on her and help put her family’s minds at ease,” Officer Foley added. “Being able to help people in situations like Mrs. Zak’s is one of the reasons why I pursued this career.”