One of the proudest moments for a parent is seeing their kid set out for the first day of school. It’s exciting and nerve-wracking all at once, but being taken to school by a parent is not something every child gets to experience.
For 9-year-old Noah, the start of this school year looks different from those in the past.
His dad can’t take him to school, and won’t be able to ask him how his day went, because his dad passed away in June after complications from COVID-19.
According to a news release from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, “His death is considered to have occurred in the line of duty.”
LVMPD Officer Jason Swanger, a seven-year veteran of the force, was not just an LEO; he was a dedicated father and husband. The department, Swanger’s wife Christa and his son have all felt the loss deeply, but they’re looking out for each other.
That meant that on Noah’s first day of school, his father’s colleagues stepped up to escort him to school.
“What an emotional morning,” Christa Morganti-Swanger posted on Facebook on Monday. “Noah’s 1st day of 4th grade without his daddy walking him into school with me. My little man is so grown up and he did so well.
“My heart melted when his squad mates came to the house to escort him to school. Noah once again was so surprised, overwhelmed, and just appreciative of how Squad EA24 has supported us through all of this.
“As we arrived at the school Noah saw the news there and asked, ‘mom, why is the news here, are they here for me? Oh my goodness!’ All of the support is overwhelming. We love and appreciate all of you.”
The police department shared photos from the day, too, and racked up over 9,000 reactions.
“The families of the fallen are not left behind,” the department’s post read. “Our officers escorted Noah Swanger, 9, to his first day of 4th grade at #SteveSchorrElementary.
“His dad, Ofc. #JasonSwanger passed away on June 24. Noah wore a tie today because he’s the man of the house now.”
While Jason’s absence will continue to be felt, and the family will have to adjust to many more “firsts” without him, Noah (and Christa) have proof that the LVMPD has their backs.
“Noah wants to be the #LVMPDSheriff one day,” the LVMPD tweeted. “You are family and know we will always be here for you.”
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.