8-year-old heart patient becomes Memphis Police officer for a day

Tennessee News
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Shaheem Young becomes a Memphis police officer for a day. (Source: WREG)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) — A Memphis third-grader who underwent heart surgery got to live his dream of being a police officer for a day.

Egypt Elementary student Shaheem Young had to have heart surgery after a routine school physical back in October uncovered a problem with his heartbeat.

“We heard an irregular heartbeat, which is like a heart murmur, and we immediately contacted the mother and let the mother know, ‘hey, we want you to look into this,'” said Terrence Crockett with Well Child.

Surgery was the only option to unblock a heart valve.

While recovering, Shaheem shared his futures plans to become a Memphis Police officer. Thursday, the department turned that dream into reality for a day.

“Officers in Memphis are some great role models for our youth, and it’s just a blessing to me to know that some of our young people are still inspired to be police officers,” said Tardario Holmes with Memphis Police.

Holmes said this was personal for him. He was around the same age as Shaheem when he set his sights on working with the best in blue.

It’s not just fun and games for Shaheem. He wants to use the badge to boost morale.

“I want to help people and because sometimes people don’t have nothing to do, and sometimes they make bad decisions,” Shaheem said.

Shaheem’s decision to one day serve and protect would not be complete without sirens and a ride to the Airways Police Precinct. Deputy Director Mike Ryall swore him in and pinned him with his own badge.

Dispatch finalized things for the honorary officer through a radio call.

“We would like to congratulate officer Shaheem Young, our newest honorary Memphis Police officer.”

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