Preparing for a job interview is stressful for anyone, but when you are homeless the challenges are immense.
Phil from Tallahassee, Florida, was getting ready for a job interview at his local branch of McDonald’s. He had reportedly been told he would get the job if he turned up clean-shaven.
However, even such a simple prerequisite is tough when you don’t have money or a secure home readily available.
Phil had managed to purchase a razor second hand, but he experienced further difficulties when it turned out it was broken. It was a Sunday and the interview was due to take place the following day. I can only imagine Phil’s frustrations.
As Phil stood struggling outside a gas station, kindhearted City of Tallahassee Police Department Officer Tony Carlson pulled up in the parking lot and noticed him.
Speaking at a press conference which has since been shared to Facebook, Tony spoke about his encounter with Phil:
I saw [a man], who turned out to be Phil, out front trying to shave, having some trouble with his razor.
As I got out of my car, he asked me if I knew anything about fixing a razor, because it was broken, and if I could look at it.
For whatever reason, instead of just getting in my car and leaving, I went over there and I looked at it, and it was missing a screw.
Neither Phil or Tony had any spare screws on them, but Tony was able to help tighten up the existing screws so the razor was actually usable.
Watch the heartwarming scenes for yourself below:
As Tony worked to fix the razor, he learned all about Phil’s upcoming job interview; noting how ‘he seemed excited about it.’ Impressed by Phil’s sincere determination to improve his circumstances, Tony was keen to give him a helping hand.
Once Phil starting shaving, it was clear there were further obstacles to overcome. Without a mirror to call his own, Phil was unable to see his own face, making shaving difficult.
It was then Tony stepped in to give Phil a shave himself, right where the two men stood in the gas station parking lot.
According to Tony:
I wish I could’ve done more, but in between calls for services, this was the best I could do.
Passerby Greg Wallenfelsz happened to be at the gas station in question when the incident occurred, and was able to capture the encounter on film.
The footage has since gone viral, inspiring and reminding people all over the world to treat others with kindness and humility.
However, Tony has remained modest about his actions, stating:
It happens all the time, It just so happens this time somebody caught it on film.
Officers all over the place… our department, the Sheriff’s department, other cities… they’re always doing things like this that don’t get the attention that this just happened to get.
Tony added how he preferred to view himself and his fellow officers as ‘peace officers’ first and law enforcers second.
According to CNN, Phil got the job, and the opportunity for a new start.
Whether you are a member of the police force or not, I think there is plenty we can learn from this good Samaritan.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.