At a time where police officers are often portrayed in a negative light, a young boy reminds us how these officers leave a positive impact on those they protect and serve.
Eleven-year-old Devarjaye “DJ” Daniel of Texas had his dream come true December 4 when he was sworn in as an honorary police officer for 53 different police departments at a ceremony at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. DJ was diagnosed with anaplastic ependymoma, a terminal cancer of the brain and spine four years ago.
DJ’s goal to become an honorary police officer occurred when he and his family were helped in 2017 by three police officers when Hurricane Harvey caused them to take temporary housing at Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center, according to his father, Theodis Daniel.
“That first impression was everlasting to all my boys and now all of my boys have been sworn in as honorary officers … and Devarjaye is part of 743 police departments as of yesterday,” Daniel told Good Morning, America. He also added that DJ got the idea from a newspaper article featuring a young cancer patient named Abigail Arias who became an honorary police officer in 2019.
Franklin, Ohio Chief of Police Adam Colon had a custom Franklin Police Division suit made for DJ and had nothing but praises for the young honorary officer.
“He’s got a lot of personality and I think it just makes him happy and [he] likes to make others happy, and it’s good to see,” Colon told Good Morning, America.
Lt. Josh Sanders of the Wheeling Police Department in Wheeling, West Virginia was also present to honor DJ.
“What we like to do is help people … so if we can add some health to that young man’s life [with these swearing-in ceremonies], that’s what we wanted to do,” said Sanders.
“The kid has a great spirit. He is a motivator. He is an inspirer. He just makes me want to be a better person,” he added.
DJ’s honorary officer status didn’t stop with the U.S. police departments. The FBI Academy reported that he is also an honorary police officer for the London Metropolitan Police, his first international honor, according to Good Morning, America.
Daniel shared DJ’s story in the hopes of inspiring others to be kind.
“I hope this story inspires everyone in the nation, in the world, to be kind to one another,” said Daniels.
DJ has truly touched a lot of hearts and we wish him all the best.