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Police officer pays it forward after 8-year old buys him dinner

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JAMESBURG, Nj. – An 8-year old girl recently purchased a meal for a police officer, and now his department is paying back her act of kindness.

It started when Mikayla Raji and her mother, Marisol “Mimi” Jimenez-Raji were having dinner at the Villa Borghese restaurant in Helmetta, N.J. Patrolman Joseph Quinn of the Jamesburg Police Department stopped by to pick up a to-go order, and struck up a conversation with Mikayla. After the officer walked away, Mikayla asked her mother if they could pay for his order.

“I wanted to because he deserves respect and kindness,” said Mikayla.

The restaurant owner told Officer Quinn someone paid for his lunch but wanted to remain anonymous. He went back to work, intent on finding out who it was so he could say thank you.

‘If that were the end of the story, it would be a good story,’ the Jamesburg Police Department wrote on Facebook. But amazingly, Quinn and his department later learned something incredible about little Mikayla.

Mikayla’s father, Tommy, was a police officer in Perth Amboy, NJ. He was killed in the line of duty by a drunk driver about seven months before Mikayla was born.

“Obviously going there that day I crossed paths with Mikayla and myself and Mikayla made long-term friends,” said Quinn.

According to Marisol’s Facebook page, Mikayla has since visited the department to meet with the officers, where they invited her to march with them in this year’s Memorial Day parade.

In addition, the officers of the Jamesburg Police Department have started a GoFundMe page for Mikayla, that has already raised more than $12,000 to help pay for her schooling.

You can find Mikayla’s GoFundMe here.