NILES, Ill. — A homeless man was in disbelief after a Niles police officer gave him his shoes.
At about 5 p.m. Saturday, Niles Police Officer Brian Zagorski noticed a homeless man had tripped over his shoe, which was missing the sole. The officer had a quick conversation with the man and then gave him his own shoes.
"He was having trouble walking," the officer said. "The rubber under his feet was folding under as he took a step."
Niles police shared the story and a photo of the encounter on their Twitter account.
Zagorski also offered the man a bag of H.O.P.E., a backpack put together by officers with clothing donations and toiletries, but the man declined. He said he couldn't believe that Zagorski had given up his own shoes to him.
The officer said he asked the man what size he wore, and it was the same size the officer wore.
The officer said he offered additional assistance, but the man politely declined, and left with a new pair of shoes.
"I was happy. I made a difference, and that’s essentially what we sign up to do, is to make a difference," Zagosrki said.
The officer said he hasn't talked with the man since Saturday, but said he will keep an eye out not only for him, but for others who may also need help in the future.