Helping Hands

(WSVN) - A homeless father was at his wits’ end until a pair of BSO sheriff’s deputies decided to lend some helping hands and changed his life for the better. 7s Brian Entin has the story.

It wasn’t long ago that this car was home to Raymond Niblack and his 6-year-old son Shawn.

Raymond Niblack, was homeless: “There was times I was literally crying and he would reach up from his car seat and rub my back and say, ‘Daddy, it’s going to be OK.”

Raymond had lost his job and apartment. He and Shawn were living in the car.

When Shawn wasn’t at school, they’d hang out at parks. For safety, they’d sleep in this well-lit Walmart parking lot at night.

It all got to be too much for the single father.

Raymond Niblack: “I had gone to his school to discuss the possibility of putting him into foster care or something like that because I just didn’t want my son living in the car with me anymore.”

Dania Elementary School resource officer and Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputy Taryn Session noticed how upset Raymond was.

Deputy Taryn Session, Broward Sheriff’s Office: “He was like, ‘You can’t help me. No one can help me.’ It just kind of stuck with me because I think everyone is a paycheck or two away from a crisis.”

She decided to help by teaming up with BSO Deputy Eric Hoff, and the two went to work.

Deputy Taryn Session: “I would get food to him. I would buy him Publix gift cards. If it was the weekend, I would give him gas money just to make sure he could run the car and have AC overnight ’cause it was very, very hot.”

They also reached out to people in the community for donations.

Deputy Eric Hoff, Broward Sheriff’s Office: “We were able to find him a room at Fero’s Motel for a couple of nights.”

With their help and support, Raymond was able to get aftercare for Shawn at school and a full time job at a Motel Six. He then found a place to live.

Now Raymond and Shawn make sure to drop by BSO’s District Office to say hello.

Raymond Niblack: “Their generosity and their kindness is the reason I’m here today with my son, because if I would have lost my boy, I mean, what else is there?”

Deputy Eric Hoff: “It just goes to show when you just take the time to find out somebody’s story, what you can do for them.”

Shawn is doing well in school. And Raymond is looking forward to a brighter future.

Raymond Niblack: “We have a long way to go, but we’re out of the woods now. We’re out of the darkest part and we’re still together. What more can I ask for?”

An act of kindness and helping hands made all the difference for this father and son.

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