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Sumter, S.C. police officer goes out of his way to do the right thing

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Cops take a lot of heat all over the United States for doing the wrong thing. Well, according to Nashville’s WSMV-TV on May 8, one Sumter, S.C. police officer is taking the heat for doing something right.

When 13-year-old Cameron Simmons called the police, he never knew what he was getting when Officer Gaetano Acerra got the call. Gaetano went to the house and found the boy very upset after fighting with his mother. He told the officer that he didn’t want to live there anymore.

Acerra took Cameron home and found that the boy didn’t have a bed to sleep in. Still, Acerra told him, “You have it good, you have a roof over your head.” He told Cameron that he would try to help him out.

A few weeks later, Acerra put his money and donations where his mouth was and showed up at Cameron’s house with a truck full of things to make the young man’s life more bearable.

Cameron now has his own bed. He had been sleeping on a leaking inflatable mattress that many times left him sleeping on the hard floor. A TV and a desk with a chair came with the bed, as well as a Wii game that was donated to the officer when he told the boy’s story.

So why did Officer Gaetano Acerra do what he did? "I didn't do this for publicity or to get people to notice me. I did it because I could. It was the right thing to do and I think people should do things like this. My heart went out for him. I thought the little things that he needed I could give him, to make him a happier kid.”

Aside from the great feeling of helping someone else, Officer Acerra has also gained a friend. Cameron has his cell phone number and knows he can call Acerra any time he needs to talk. Acerra plans to bring Cameron a dresser and mirror, something else the young man has never known.

The Sumter Police Department said that since this story first aired, they are fielding calls from people who want to help Cameron and his mom. Charity goes out in ripples and just spreads and spreads.

My favorite part of this story is, “I did it because I could. It was the right thing to do.” Maybe if more of us thought like Officer Gaetano Acerra, the world would truly be a kinder, gentler place.

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