After almost two months of recovering from being struck by a vehicle, 14-year-old Jamie Zendejas and 15-year-old Adrian Banegas wanted to thank the deputies who responded to the scene of their accident.
On Sunday, July 15, 2018, Jamie and Adrian were enjoying summer vacation and walked along Rosemead Boulevard near Rex Road, in the city of Pico Rivera. A driver who lost control of a vehicle barreled over the curb and onto the sidewalk, directly toward them. As the car approached, Adrian jumped out of the way; his body was grazed by the vehicle and he received minor injuries. Jamie was not as lucky; he was struck by the vehicle and dragged underneath for approximately 200 feet. He sustained multiple traumatic injuries which required immediate medical treatment and was airlifted from the scene. The extensive number of surgeries and recovery time which followed delayed Jamie’s attendance in the new school year as a freshman.
Deputy Michael Brock was one of the first responders and conducted the collision investigation. His heart went out to the two boys, as one suffered serious injuries and the other was emotionally wounded by having watched it happen. The deputy later followed up with the families to see how the boys were healing. At that time, Jamie was recently released from the hospital and convalescing at home. When Deputy Brock walked in, Jamie immediately recognized him, extended his hand for him to shake, and thanked him. Since then, Deputy Brock has remained in close contact with both families, offering his support and striving to be a positive influence in their lives.
Jamie knew that everyone who responded to the scene -from the deputies, to the off-duty nurse who helped him, to the firefighter paramedics who treated him- was there to save his life. They tended to the boys and advocated for their well-being during a frightening and confusing time in their young lives…and that made quite an impression. As soon as Jamie was able, the conscious and thankful young man insisted on making phone calls and having his mother drive him to personally thank those who helped him that day. Jamie asked Deputy Brock if he could thank everyone at Pico Rivera Sheriff’s Station for their part at the collision scene.
The reunion which took place on Wednesday, September 19, 2018, between Jamie, Adrian, Deputy Brock, and Pico Rivera Station staff was both emotional and endearing.
Having processed the collision scene, Deputy Brock knew the awful details of what the boys endured and empathized with the worry it caused their parents. He appealed to fellow station personnel for money donations to offer an act of kindness and support to Jamie and Adrian’s families. With the collection, they purchased something almost every modern teenage boy wants to pass the time, and on behalf of everyone who contributed, Deputy Brock presented each boy with a gift card for a local video game store.
“I am very proud of Deputy Brock’s willingness to help and for the station personnel’s generosity in helping these families during this difficult time,” said Pico Rivera Station Acting Captain Marjory Jacobs.