Officers go beyond call of duty for Vietnam veteran

They pushed him in his scooter all the way home

SAN DIEGO - Two San Diego police officers are being commended for going above the call of duty.

Over the Memorial Day weekend, they pushed a Vietnam veteran nearly two miles to his home after his power scooter broke down on a busy road.

Both officers work out of the San Diego Police Department's Eastern division office off of Aero Drive in Serra Mesa, and neither one gave what they did Sunday a second thought.

"The least I could do was push him, you know. That's the least I could do. He's sacrificed and given so much to this country," said SDPD Officer Milo Shields.

It was not what Vietnam veteran Gil Larocque was expecting to happen when his power scooter stopped working along busy Clairemont Mesa Boulevard on the day before Memorial Day.

"You wouldn't expect them to do something like that … put you all the way home," said Larocque.

But that is exactly what San Diego police Officers Milo Shields, a veteran, and Eric Cooper, the son of a veteran, did when they saw Larocque struggling, trying to flag down traffic in the hot sun.

"I appreciate what they did," said Larocque. "They went out of their way. How many people would stop?"

It was a lot easier said than done. There were some hiccups along the nearly two-mile route as the officers pushed Larocque and a dead scooter that weighed more than 300 pounds.

"Whenever we got to an intersection, we'd be in the middle of an intersection, pushing this guy and it would just lock up, so we'd have to drag this thing through the intersection," said Cooper.

Larocque has had trouble walking ever since he suffered several injuries in Vietnam. Since he cannot drive, Larocque uses the scooter to run errands for him and his 90-year-old father, a Pearl Harbor survivor.

"He's 90 years old and he's in better condition than I am," said Larocque.

"90 years old and a Pearl Harbor survivor?" asked 10News photojournalist Ginny Creighton.

"Yes," responded Larocque.

Shields told 10News, "We think about veterans one day a year. We should think about them more. Memorial Day and we move on, but every day to me is Memorial Day."

After they got Larocque home, the SDPD sergeant who filmed the officers pushing the scooter down the street picked them up and returned them to their patrol car.

Larocque's scooter is in the shop getting fixed.



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