A mother from Alpine, Utah, phoned 911 around 2 a.m. for an emergency — she needed baby formula for her tired and starving 6-week-old infant.
Shannon Bird, a mother of five, generally breastfeeds her kids, so she didn’t have any baby formula on hand. Her husband was away on business at the time, and her four other children — one of whom had a damaged leg – were all sound asleep.
“I’ve never not had food for my newborn. It was really scary for me,” she recalled.
Shannon called the police at 2:12 a.m. on January 28 to seek urgent assistance. She is heard expressing to the operator about the emergency in a 911 call tape obtained by KSL.com. She stated that she was unable to feed her child.
“I’ve been calling neighbors, and no one will answer,” she told the operator. “I’ve never been in this predicament ever. My milk just literally dried out. This is my fifth kid, and this has never happened.”
Shannon was unable to contact anyone in their community due to the fact that it was already late, which exacerbated the problem.
“She was screaming,” Shannon said about her newborn that night. “I called my husband and we were brainstorming. I started calling neighbors and teenagers in the area and my little brother and no one was awake.”
Officers from the Lone Peak Police Department responded to her call and drove to Shannon’s house after picking up a gallon of milk from a convenience shop. They recognized she was too young for ordinary milk once they came and met the infant. They went to Walmart to get some baby formula for the starving baby.
In the body-camera footage, Officer Brett Wagstaff can be heard saying, “We’ll leave this with you. We’ll be right back with some formula for your baby — she’s adorable.”
Wagstaff returned with the infants formula, accompanied by Officer Konner Gabbitas. He informed Shannon that it was the same milk he and his wife had given their newborn baby.
“Hopefully it doesn’t upset her stomach,” the sympathetic officer said to the distraught mother. Shannon offered to pay for the milk, but they declined.
Officers Wagstaff and Gabbitas were acknowledged for their efforts by the Lone Peak Police Department on Facebook after the nice deed went viral.
“So very proud of our Officers and their dedication to duty,” the department wrote.
Other parents who shared Shannon’s situation on Facebook couldn’t help but admire the two cops who stepped in to aid a mother in distress.
“The police could have laughed her off, reprimanded her for running out of milk, charged her for inappropriate use/abuse of emergency services – instead, they treated her like a human. I’ve been crying at 2 am, sleep deprived, and needing help as a new mom. Thank you to the people who have compassion.” Nicole Brooks commented.
“Poor mama. She was at the end of her rope. Don’t have kids, but I have needed help. Thank goodness for the kindness of those officers.” Isabella Mirabel wrote.
Shannon was taken aback by the police’ response to her “unusual” situation. She wanted to go to the store and have the cops look after her children while she was gone, but they did so much more. She couldn’t express her gratitude enough for their assistance at that difficult period.
“Thank you for helping people in situations where they can’t help themselves in emergencies,” Shannon said.
To protect and serve the public are the primary motivations for joining the police force. To these officers, no emergency was too small. As long as someone needed their help, they will be there to respond!