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A Viral Photo Shows A White State Trooper Praying For A Black Man During A Routine Traffic Stop.

There is currently a photo going around of a white police officer standing next to a black man, but it’s probably not what you’re thinking it is. During the course of a routine traffic stop, a white state trooper said a prayer for the safety of a black motorist. The touching image, which has since gone viral on the internet, captures the moment.

The Moment a White State Trooper Prayed for a Black Man

On Monday, March 28, 2019, while North Carolina State Trooper Jaret Doty was on duty, he observed a silver 2016 Volvo traveling in excess of the speed limit on Interstate 85 in Rowan County, North Carolina. As was his custom, he turned on his lights and began to give chase to the vehicle as it traveled south on Interstate 85. Doty, who was 45 years old at the time, was unaware that this particular stop was not going to be one that was typical for him. At this halt, he would finally receive the chance that he had been looking forward to seizing for a long time.

Doty later stated when asked why the white state trooper prayed for a black man during a routine traffic stop, “It’s just one of those things I can’t explain.” Doty was referring to the moment in which the black man was stopped by the white state trooper.

Tony Geddis, the African American guy featured in the photo that went viral, was riding in the passenger seat of a silver Volvo. He was the only one in the vehicle, and his daughter Ashlye V. Wilkerson, who is 39 years old, was behind the wheel. Wilkerson’s mother and her two small children were riding in the back seat of the car. Following Geddis’ chemotherapy sessions, the family prepared to travel back to their home in Columbia, South Carolina. Even before they saw the lights of the state policeman, the family was understandably worried about what might happen. But being a family of color, their worries mounted as Wilkerson pulled over to the side of the road in front of the white police officer who was following them in his state patrol truck. Wilkerson was trying to avoid a traffic ticket.

As soon as she realized it, Wilkerson told her father that the police had pulled them over because she had been going too fast for the posted speed limit.

She yelled at her father, “Oh, God, I’m going so fast, Dad!”

And in a manner that was typical of their connection, Geddis talked to his daughter in an effort to reassure and comfort her.

A White Officer Approaches the Car

Doty approached the vehicle from the right side and spoke to Geddis through the rolled-down passenger side window.

Doty introduced himself and then asked, as many of us have, “Ma’am, do you know what speed you were doing?” Then he demanded Wilkerson’s license and registration.

“This is my baby girl,” Geddis said in an attempt to defend his daughter. She’s taking me home from a chemo treatment at Duke’s cancer center.”

Doty had noticed the older man was slumped in his seat, but the way he struggled to get out his defense, which came out barely audible, indicated Geddis was dealing with something serious.

Doty Takes Things Personally.

Doty later recalled noticing a pouch Geddis was carrying near his pelvic area. Doty knew what this pouch was because he had to wear one before when he had severe ulcerative colitis that necessitated surgery to remove parts of his colon. Doty had more than one bout with this agonizing illness, and the consequences were severe.

“I felt like I was dying,” Doty explained.

Doty’s doctors once told him that if he hadn’t gotten his illness treated, he would have most likely developed colon cancer.

Officer Doty returned to his patrol car without saying much to the family, but his illness brought back memories. He remembered how the people who were there for him had helped him get through it. And he recalled the numerous prayers said in his honor.

Doty made a promise to himself at the time: “I said that if I could touch one person, or help somebody get through their illness, I would do it.”

Instead of giving Geddis’ daughter a ticket, Trooper Doty decided to reach out to the family in some other way.

“Do you mind if I ask what type of cancer you have, Sir?” Doty inquired of Geddis.

Despite the unexpected question, Geddis responded, “No, I don’t mind.” “I’ve got colon cancer.”

That’s when Doty decided how he’d make a difference in this person’s life. “May I pray for you?” he inquired of Geddis.

Given that Geddis and his wife, Rev. Fannie M. Geddis, were active in church life and devout Christians, Geddis responded, “Of course.” “I am a firm believer in prayer.”

Doty took Geddis’ hand right then and there, and the white state trooper prayed for a black man. Wilkerson was moved and captured the moment on camera.

Do you want to know what happened to Geddis after that?

What Became Of Geddis?

Wilkerson didn’t post the photo right away; it wasn’t until her father died that she remembered it.

Anthony “Tony” Geddis died on May 22 at the age of 61 from the colon cancer he had been battling.

Wilkerson had a lot of introspection after losing her father, and she thought about all the reasons she was a daddy’s girl. Her father’s support was crucial.

And Geddis showed her this support during a routine traffic stop, where she photographed a white state trooper praying for a black man (her daddy). So she shared it on Linked In, and it quickly spread across many platforms, inspiring many people.

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