Office of Public Affairs & Media Relations
STRANDED MOM FINDS KINDNESS FROM VOLUSIA SHERIFF’S DEPUTIES
Two Volusia sheriff’s deputies opened their hearts and their wallets early Wednesday to help an Orlando mom who was found at a gas station in New Smyrna Beach with no money for a place to stay, nor a second car seat to travel safely with her two small daughters.
Deputies learned of the family’s plight from an off-duty Seminole sheriff’s deputy who said the woman was observed driving with an infant on her lap and then looking for help at the BP station at State Road 44/County Road 415.
The woman told Volusia deputies she was traveling to the beach for a few days and planned to rent an Airbnb in New Smyrna Beach, using her debit card to pay for it. But she said she had no money because her debit card and ID had been stolen in Orlando. She said she was asking for money to buy gas.
After Deputy Brady Bergeron noticed her car contained only one car seat for a toddler and no seat for her 5-month-old infant, the woman said she had no way to pay for a car seat and no friends or family that could help her.
So Deputy Bergeron went to Wal-Mart and bought a car seat for the baby to travel in. He installed the new car seat and safely adjusted the existing car seat for her 2-year-old sister. Food and water were provided from the BP station.
After determining the family had no place to stay for the night, VSO Sgt. Austin Hairston followed suit and made arrangements for the family to stay at a hotel in Edgewater. Deputies followed the family to the hotel where they helped them check in.
Sheriff Mike Chitwood commended the dedication and generosity of the deputies who stepped in to help a citizen in need. All involved will be receiving letters of commendation.
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