Gina Headen didn’t think anyone was looking when she was in her car, stopped alongside the road in Belleville, Illinois, but a cop saw the whole thing. Just when she thought that she was free and would never have to see him again, she got an unexpected note from the police officer.
St. Clair County Deputy Dan Hill first noticed Gina when she was speeding through town and stopped her for going over the speed limit. Gina took responsibility for going 65 in a 55 zone. Rather than getting a ticket that day, the cop let her off with just a warning, saying it’s her lucky day since he saw that her birthday was the same day and year as his. But as he walked away from her car, expecting her to head back out on her way, he noticed she did something else instead.
The cop was about to get in his patrol vehicle when he looked up and saw that Gina wasn’t going anywhere. With her face in her hands, it was clear she was crying, which didn’t make sense since the officer hadn’t cited her. He walked back to her car and surprised her with a tap on her window to ask if everything was okay. She told the officer that she was sad because her father, who she was close with and had been caring for, had just died.
The officer’s next words shocked her, but not as much as what happened a week later. “He said take a minute and breathe. He talked to me a minute then helped me back into traffic,” Gina wrote in a Facebook post about the incident. The two parted ways after that, but Deputy Dan wasn’t out of her life for good.
Gina didn’t realize at the time that the cop had copied down her home address from the license and registration she gave him. Then, a week after receiving the warning, she got a card from him in the mail with a handwritten message she wasn’t expecting.
“My Condolence on the loss of your father. I’m sure he was a great man who loved his family. I pray that your tear of sadness becomes tears of joy in remembering his legacy,” the note began from this man of faith, before citing an applicable line of scripture, which he thought she would find comfort in during this time of grief.
Gina was left without words for what Deputy Dan did for her on his own accord. He even incorporated religion into his condolences without knowing if she was Christian or if she would find it offensive. He simply put meaningful words to paper and spoke from his heart, not just as a public servant, but as a servant of God, spreading His good news.
Bravo to this incredible cop for breaking free from political correctness and going above and beyond the badge to fulfill his duty to God, to comfort those in need and give hope in a time of darkness.