Mississippi cops on their lunch break took the time to share a meal with a troubled man, but the generosity of the officers did not end there.
Sergeant David McCoy of the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Department in Hernando was on his way to lunch with three deputies when they saw the man outside Wendy’s.
“I noticed a gentleman sitting on the curb with his face in his lap so I decided to go over there and talk to him, and see if he’s ok,” McCoy told InsideEdition.com. “He began to tell me that he had been hitchhiking from Ohio.”
The man, who identified himself as Dan Williams, said was trying to make his way down to Louisiana where he hoped to find work after spending all his money visiting his elderly parents in Ohio.
Williams later told InsideEdition.com when he met the officers, he had been in town for more than a week. Temperatures were exceeding 100 degrees, and because hitchhiking is illegal in nearby Tennessee, he wanted to wait for the weather to cool down before he walked along the highway into the next town.
He considered walking at night when it was cooler, but knew it would have been dangerous.
Sympathetic of the man, McCoy asked if he was hungry, and offered him something to eat.
After they ordered, McCoy’s act of kindness was met with more generosity.
“The Wendy’s there even offered to pay for him,” McCoy said.
Williams, 57, then took his food and made his way to table, where McCoy followed, and asked if he could join.
They chatted at length, and when Williams told him about what his plans were for the rest of his journey, “I couldn’t let him do that,” McCoy said.
“Me and a couple deputies that were there, we got together and bought him a bus ticket home,” he told InsideEdition.com.
Between him, Deputy Hunter Garrett, Deputy Thomas Brea, and Deputy Bryan Andrews, the officers pooled together enough money to buy Williams an $89 bus ticket, and an additional $60 for food in his journey home.
“He seemed like a nice gentleman, maybe a little down on his luck right now,” he said. “We couldn’t let him hitchhike from there.”
After lunch, the officers drove him 30 minutes to the nearest Greyhound terminal in Memphis, Tennessee, where Williams then embarked on his six-hour journey home.
“It’s not all about writing people tickets, taking people to jail,” McCoy said. “We’re here to help.”
Williams told InsideEdition.com Friday that he has since arrived safely in Louisiana and will begin looking for work as a painter or carpenter after resting up from his long journey.