A Minnesota Trooper Pulled Over Doctor For Speeding And Gave Her His Protective Masks

A trooper from the state of Minnesota touched a doctor’s heart by turning what should have been a ticket for speeding into a soulful act of kindness. 

On March 21 a cardiologist at a coronavirus quarantine facility in Duluth named Dr. Sarosh Ashraf Janjua, was stopped for speeding by Trooper Brian Schwartz.

However, instead of issuing a speeding ticket, Brian gave Sarosh five N95 masks for protection against the coronavirus – as well as a warning to drive slower next time.

“I burst into tears. And though it may just have been the cold wind, I think he teared up a little as well, before wishing me well and walking away,” Sarosh wrote on Facebook.

“This complete stranger, who owed me nothing and is more on the front lines than I am, shared his precious masks with me, without my even asking.”

A Minnesota State trooper pulled me over on I-35 this past weekend for driving above the speed limit. When he saw my Massachusetts driver’s license, he asked me what I was doing all the way out in Minnesota, so I told him I travel here every month for my work as a locums cardiologist. He went back to his patrol car to look up my license, and when he returned, quite firmly told me it was very irresponsible of me to be speeding, especially since I would not only take up resources if I got into an accident, but would also not be in a position to help patients.Feeling thoroughly chastised, I waited for him to write me a ticket. Instead, he told me he was going to let me off with a warning. As I sputtered to apologize and say thank you, he reached in to hand me what I assumed was my license back. It wasn’t until my hand had closed around what he was giving me that its unexpected bulkiness drew my eyes to it. Five N95 masks, from the supply the state had given him for his protection. I burst into tears. And though it may just have been the cold wind, I think he teared up a little as well, before wishing me well and walking away. Like all healthcare workers and emergency responders around the world, I have felt afraid of not having adequate protective equipment, and in my darkest moments, have worried about what would happen if I fell sick far from home. This complete stranger, who owed me nothing and is more on the front lines than I am, shared his precious masks with me, without my even asking. The veil of civilization may be thin, but not all that lies behind it is savage. We are going to be ok.———————————————————————UPDATE: Thank you, Anderson Cooper @ CNN for having me on Anderson Cooper 360 to share the story of Minnesota State Trooper Brian J Schwartz’ kindness. https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/30/us/minnesota-trooper-n95-masks-doctor-trnd/index.html

Posted by Sarosh Ashraf Janjua on Monday, March 30, 2020

The trooper felt it was his duty to give Sarosh his N-95 masks after spotting “what appeared to be two used N95 masks in Ashraf’s purse that he assumed she was reusing,” the Minnesota State Patrol revealed to CNN.

The N95 masks that medical workers use to shield themselves against COVID-19 are reportedly in frighteningly short supply. Health care personnel are forced to use worn masks, risking getting infected while at work.

Sarosh herself said that she was “afraid” of getting infected, just like many others in the health care field are feeling at the moment.

“Thank you to Sarosh for her hard work and dedication,” the Minnesota State Patrol wrote on Facebook. “Troopers are working hard during the pandemic and are thinking about all the first responders who are caring for Minnesotans during this critical time.”

And while the current virus crisis has certainly changed the way we live, the hearts of people like this kind Trooper remind us that nothing can stand in the way of human unity in desperate times.

“I think we are all just hanging on to something that makes us feel safe,” Sarosh told CNN. “Somehow, for Americans, that something has become N95 masks and toilet paper. Trooper Schwartz’ act of kindness became my something.”

Needless to say, there were plenty of positive messages directed to the hero in this story.

Here are some of their comments.

One user said:

“One of the positives this pandemic has brought out in people is the overwhelming goodness and kind hearts inherent in so many. Thank you, Trooper Schwartz, for your thoughtfulness and thank you, Dr Janjua, for letting the world know. And a very heartfelt thank you to both for the jobs you do every day, now and after we get this pandemic together. From Tallahassee FL”

Another wrote:

“Thank you for your gift of love. We are praying for you and your police station and all of the officers also, as you also put your lives on the line. This is how we get through this. We all come together as the United States and help each other, not by division. Be blessed, and again thank you. Praying someone else passes it forward and replenishes you with masks.”

A third said:

“Thank for gifting those preciious masks. I’m an RN in an ER and we are reusing our masks. I pray more factories step up to manufature proper PPE so everyone working in healthcare is protected from the virus and so we can protect our patients.”

Another user commented:

“Thank you Trooper Schwartz. Although your act of caring and kindness was probably just one of many you perform every year, it is outstanding this Dr took the time to get this story out to the public so they can truly understand the huge heart Troopers have. So many feel that we are out there writing tickets and enforcing the law like robots and don’t care about the average person. Those feeling that way are sadly mistaken and uninformed as much of a Troopers day is oftentimes spent helping people, not “hurting” them, as we often hear enforcement of laws is construed to do by those on the receiving end of a ticket or arrest.
Most take this job because they want to help others and your selfless act is just one more sign you are one of the great ones!
Thank you for all you do Tor Schwartz. To you and all your MSP colleagues, please stay safe during these incredibly dangerous times.
Mark Yanitelli
NY State Police (retired)”

What are your thoughts on Trooper Brian Schwartz’s act of kindness and generosity?

Let us know by joining the conversation in the comments and please share this article if you’ve found it of value.

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