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Protecting and serving: How a Shelby County SRO stepped up this week in a big way

Published: Jan. 21, 2022 at 7:36 PM CST
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SHELBY COUNTY, Ala. (WBRC) - Navigating traffic and inspecting hallways is what Officer Carnell Buford has done at Mt. Laurel Elementary for eight years.

“He’s really nice to everybody,” fourth-grader Jack Schwall said.

Buford is the first to notice if something is off. So an empty cafeteria Thursday made him wonder.

“Where’s everybody, she said well this is it, you’re looking at it. I said what?!” Buford said.

Without a second thought, Officer Buford grabbed his gloves and served lunch for every period.

“It was fun to see how the faces lit up as they came into the lunch room,” Buford said. “It just seemed like all the kids wanted to come through my line at that point.”

At the time, Officer Buford didn’t think much of what he was doing.

“Just started serving the kids and everything, everything went good,” Buford added.

But it left an impression on Schwall.

“What I thought was how many stuff he does for us, he makes sure nothing bad is happening, he served our lunch yesterday,” Schwall said.

Which made Jack’s day a little easier!

“Otherwise, I might not have had lunch at my usual time, might not have had as much learning as usual,” Schwall said.

Officer Buford said times are tough right now for everyone. So whether he’s in the lunchroom or classroom, he’s happy to help out.

“Anytime you can put a smile on the kids’ or admin’s face I take the opportunity,” Buford said.

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