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Photos courtesy of Tara Costello
Photos courtesy of Tara Costello
109th Precinct police officers and Liam Costello meet.

Local police officers turned a Whitestone boy’s heartbreak into happiness with an unforgettable act of kindness.

On June 28, 8-year-old Liam Costello took his nightly trip to Fort Totten Park with mom Tara Costello. A daily ritual, Liam put his scooter in the brush at the park so he and his mom could go for a short walk by the jetty.

However, when they returned, the scooter was gone.

“He was hysterical crying,” Tara Costello said. “It just broke his heart.”

Costello, feeling heartbroken herself, tried to take a positive approach, calling the circumstance a “good teachable moment.”

It was then that Costello took to a neighborhood Facebook group to vent and warn other parents about what had happened. After receiving words of support from the community, Costello was contacted by We Love Whitestone Civic Association President Alfredo Centola, who asked the devoted mother if he could reach out to the 109th Precinct on her behalf. Costello agreed.

“The next thing I know, [the police officers] contacted me, stopped by and spoke with my son,” Costello said.

Two days later, Sergeant Jason Pilla and Police Officers Thomas Dean and Mark Wilson were back to drop off a brand-new Razor scooter.

“They wanted him to have it in time for the weekend,” Costello said. “They couldn’t have been any nicer.”

Liam wasn’t home when the officers first arrived with the scooter, Costello explained, but was able to meet his new heroes a few days later.

“I felt really happy,” Liam said.

For Costello, seeing how the community came together was most affecting.

“As a parent, I was amazed,” Costello said. “But as a citizen, it was just overwhelming. I think we take can take our police officers for granted. This was a good reminder of the important things they do every day.”

Whitestone scooter (1)


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