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Corporal Melinda Wray – Norfolk Police Department
AC4P Policing Stories

Corporal Melinda Wray – Norfolk Police Department

On a recent spring morning in April, a man wandered into the Police Administration Building in Downtown Norfolk. The man smiled politely with a wide, toothy grin and stared at the officers. When asked if he needed any assistance, the man simply stated, “I think I’m lost.” The man knew his first name and believed he was married. He recalled living in Connecticut in the 1970’s and was dressed in newer clothing with shoe soles that hadn’t been worn through miles of walking. Without a wallet or identification cards, a cell phone would have surely shed light on family contacts. As he pulled his hands from his jean pockets, a few strands of lint fell from the lining. His hands were empty and officers were left with a 60-year-old man, whose memory ended in 1975. Thankfully, out of all the buildings in Downtown Norfolk, the man managed to open the one wooden door located under a small, blue awning. Behind the door were the Chief of Police and his officers ready to assist. One hour later, police radios could still be heard broadcasting the lost man’s description in hopes of finding family. After scouring the Downtown streets, a woman was located outside the Battleship Wisconsin. A worried wife was comforted with the knowledge her loved one was found as officers reunited the family. The officers involved in searching for the man’s family received AC4P wristbands. Each officer took the time to comfort the man, during what can only be assumed as an extremely stressful event for a person suffering from cognitive ailments or dementia. The personal attention this man and his family received was above the call of duty. They treated the lost soul and his wife with the respect that you’d want for your own grandparents, and in turn, provided a happy ending for what could have been a tragic outcome. Kudos to the officers and the Norfolk Police Department for their daily efforts in excellence. Wristband # 126779 Wristband # 126772 Wristband # 126778