Tired from days on the road and trying to save money, Robert Wood’s family prepared for another night of sleeping in their car. But a Eugene, Oregon police lieutenant wouldn’t let them stay in the city park. He paid for a room at a motel instead.
Wood was moving his family back to Oregon from Alaska. It was late when they arrived in Eugene and he, his wife and their two children were already bedding down in their seats, like they’d done on the long drive down the remote Alaska Highway.
When Lt. David Natt spotted the car and began telling Mr. Wood he would have to move, he noticed the two boys, a two and four-year-old, asleep in their laps.
“It’s part of our three-word motto: protect, serve and care,” Lt. Natt said. “And you have to take each one of those, in all circumstances, to heart.”
It turns out, the University Fellowship Church created and endowed a special fund for use by Eugene police officers to help people in need. Lt. Natt dipped into the fund to put the family up in a motel for a couple of nights until they got their bearings.
“I have tears in my eyes,” Wood posted to Facebook on Feb. 25, praising the police officer’s act of kindness. “Holy loving lucky stars. I got tears in my eyes.”
“He made me want to do the same kind of thing for other people,” Wood continued. “It was moving, you know. It just was.”
The Wood family is now staying with friends and looking for a permanent home in Eugene.