13-year-old teen Cameron Simmons from South Carolina called the local police department and threatened to run away from home.
The boy sounded distressed and quite upset, so Officer Gaetano Acerra decided to come visit Cameron and check it out for himself.
Cameron’s house is located not far from a convenience store, and he managed to call 911 via the store’s phone. Officier Acerra recalls their first encounter.
He was so upset. I asked him questions about why he didn’t want to live there, and I was complimenting him on his clothes. He had nice clothes and shoes on.
Cameron told the police officer that he wanted to run away because his mother yelled at him as he wasn’t allowed to play on his older brother’s video console system. It seems like a minor reason to want to run away, but when the officer stepped into Cameron’s bedroom, he suddenly understood there was a deeper reason for Cameron’s distress.
“He took me to his room and it was four walls, two windows and hardwood floor,” the police officer said. “It was just empty. He had his clothes on the ground in a black garbage bag. I asked him where he sleeps and he said, ‘Sometimes on the couch and sometimes on a blow-up mattress.’”
When he asked why Cameron had to live and sleep in such terrible conditions, it was explained to him that the family had to move abruptly to take care of a sick relative and simply couldn’t afford to buy a bed yet.
Secretly, Officer Carrera gathered a couple of items for the little boy in the coming days, so that he could finally have a real bedroom to sleep in.
A couple of days later, Gaetano and his older brother Ferdinando came to visit Cameron’s place again. They brought a bunch of new things for the little boy, including a television, a desk to study, a chair, a comforter, a Nintendo Wii gaming console of his own and last but not least, a proper bed.
Cameron’s older brother who is 18 years old also wasn’t sleeping in the best conditions, but Officer Acerra made sure that wasn’t the case anymore.
For his brother, we got him a queen-sized bed, a backboard and frame. His brother has a complete room now, too.
The police officer says that she’s very, very grateful for his actions. The officer says that she had been praying for her boys and couldn’t be any happier and more thankful. Just recently, the police officer delivered a bicycle for Cameron and an air hockey table for both brothers. Cameron and Gaetano are now good friends, and the police officer even set up a GoFundMe page for the Simmons family as they still need essential items such as a washer and dryer.
“I didn’t expect this, and I’m not one to gloat or brag or even ask for help, but with all these people standing behind us, we can change a lot of lives,” he said.