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On Monday, July 11, 2011, my husband and I were traveling north on I-75 on our way back from Sarasota, Florida to Chickamauga, Georgia when we heard a noise coming from underneath our vehicle and pulled onto the ramp leading onto 39th Avenue in Gainesville. As soon as we pulled onto the ramp the back left tire "popped", went flat, and we were officially stranded.

Within 2-3 minutes, a Fla Trooper had his lights on and pulled directly behind our vehicle creating a shield that would have prevented any car from running us down as we began to change the tire. The trooper, Javon Murphy, not only guarded our safety, but began to ask us what we needed and how he could help. I was so surprised when he began to help us loosen the tire to change it so we could get to a tire store and have it replaced. It was dreadfully hot and he was in full uniform, and yet he stayed right with us until we had put on the spare tire. I have a son Mr. Murphy's age.

My husband and I are both educators with 25+ years near the Chattanooga area and were impressed with Mr. Murphy's manners and professionalism. He was so easy to relate to, addressed us both so respectfully, and made helpful suggestions to us as to where to locate a new tire for our car. I normally panic when I have car difficulty, but for once I felt safe and protected. We had the tire replaced and were on our way in about 2 hours.

My father was a retired judge in Clayton County, Georgia, as well as a attorney, and I have known many law enforcement personnel within my lifetime. Florida has definitely set the standard for their patrolmen and other personnel. From what my husband and I observed from Mr. Murphy, we immediately saw his potential for leadership and how seriously he views his job as a Florida State Trouper. He also demonstrated a degree and level of caring that I find immensely refreshing. I feel that he went above and beyond the call of duty. If I only had this example to show to my 5-6 year-olds to demonstrate success! In my opinion, law enforcement gets so much negative publicity, and I want to make sure that this positive story makes a a difference for someone. Please let Mr. Murphy know that I have sent this email, for I have misplaced his business card that we asked him for on that day.

A Special Thanks to Javon Murphy!

Sherrod and Brett Hart,
Chickmauga, Ga.


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