Deputies with the Frio County Sheriff’s Office in Texas on August 16 lined up to welcome a young boy to his first day of kindergarten after his father, a Frio County corporal detective, was killed in a vehicle collision in April on his way to work.
Footage released by the sheriff’s office shows Joziah Longoria walking alongside his uncle, Frio County Lieutenant Josh Longoria, before shaking hands and hugging other deputies as he makes his way into the school building.
“Today we were proud to escort our little deputy to his first day of Kindergarten. Although we still miss our brother in blue, Justin Longoria, everyday, it’s these happy memories we want to continue to make for his children,” the sheriff’s office wrote on Facebook.
Joziah’s father, Corporal Detective Justin Longoria, had been remembered by the sheriff’s office as one of their “brightest stars.”
Joziah’s mother, Leanne, thanked the deputies and Joziah’s uncle for the gesture. “Moments like these make it hard but Justin and Joziah have a whole family behind him to make this easier. May God bless his year with all smiles and knowledge I know Justin is really happy and proud to see this,” she wrote on Facebook..
In April, following her husband’s death, Leanne posted a photo of him in uniform, leaning against a sheriff’s office vehicle, alongside young Joziah wearing a mock-up police uniform and standing next to a miniature toy police vehicle.
Back in March, before his father’s untimely death, Joziah had pinned the Frio County Lieutenant badge on his uncle Josh during a ceremony – an act that Josh said meant a lot to him and his fiancé because of Joziah’s love for police officers. “Joziah often tells me that he wants to be a police officer as well,” Lt. Longoria wrote. Credit: Frio County Sheriff’s Office via Storyful