In an age where relations between law enforcement and the communities they preside over appear strained, an 8-year-old girl from Louisiana has made it her mission to bridge the gap.
Rosalyn Baldwin aims to hug a police officer in all 50 states, and she’s already halfway toward her goal, CBS News reported.
The empathetic girl was inspired after the 2016 Dallas shooting, in which the city’s police officers were targeted. Five officers were killed and nine others killed that day.
“Basically, it was the shootings in Dallas that broke her heart,” Rosalyn’s mother, told WKRC. “She said, ‘Momma, they’re killing our heroes.’ And then when it happened in Baton Rouge it was very personal to her.”
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Rosalyn has already hugged countless police officers in 27 states, and she has no plans on stopping.
One police officer in Houston said Rosalyn made them feel loved and “recharged their batteries,” in a job that can often seem thankless.
Last week, Rosalyn visited Cincinnati during the city’s dedication to officers who have died in the line of duty.
“To have a young person like that really just share that love that she has for police officers, it really warms our hearts especially on a day like this when we are remembering those that we’ve lost,” Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac said, according to CBS.
When Rosalyn was told that Cincinnati Police officer Ken Grubbs had been shot in the line of duty, she took his hand and prayed for him.
“It’s a great feeling, knowing that someone that you don’t even know is reaching out to you and just bringing love to everything,” Grubbs told WKRC.
Rosalyn even helped to build bridges between police and the community when she traveled to Ferguson, Missouri, during protects over police-involved shootings, her mother said.
“I didn’t decide, God decided,” Rosalyn said of her quest.
(H/T: CBS News)