The story of a police officer who adopted the baby of a homeless heroin addict in New Mexico tugged on the heartstrings of all Americans — including President Donald Trump.
Officer Ryan Holets received an invitation to watch the president’s State of the Union address from a private box with first lady Melania Trump.
“We have entered the twilight zone for sure,” Holets said of the news, according to CNN.
In 2017, Holets was responding to a call about a convenience store theft when he found a couple, including a pregnant woman, using heroin.
“Are you pregnant? Why are you doing that stuff?” Holets asked the woman, Chrystal Champ. “You are going to kill your baby.”
After she told Holets that addiction was controlling her life, she mentioned she was going to put her unborn baby up for adoption.
That’s when the officer asked if he could adopt the child.
WATCH: New Mexico cop hailed a hero for adopting opioid addicted woman’s baby
Holets and his wife named the baby girl Hope. She is now 10 weeks old. The couple already had four other children who were under six years old.
Since then, the baby’s birth parents have been offered treatment for their addictions.
The story is meant to highlight the government’s fight against opioid addiction.
“It’s changed my perspective forever,” the officer said, according to CNN “I can’t drive anywhere without noticing people that are homeless. I can’t help but notice people that are panhandling. Then I think about everything they’ve gone through.”
Other guests chosen to highlight speech’s theme
White House officials have said Trump’s first State of the Union speech will focus on “building a safe, strong and proud America,” and the guests were chosen to reflect that.
Along with Holets, the White House has announced a dozen other guests will be seated with Melania Trump:
- Steve Staub and Sandy Keplinger, business owners who used GOP tax laws to give larger-than-normal bonuses to their employees.
- Corey Adams, a welder in Dayton, Ohio, who will use Trump’s tax plan to save money.
- Elizabeth Alvarado, Robert Mickens, Evelyn Rodriguez, and Freddy Cuevas, the parents of Nisa Mickens and Kayla Cuevas, who were killed by international crime gang MS-13.
- Cpl Matthew Bradford (Ret.) who was injured by an IED in Iraq, and became the first blind double-amputee to re-enlist in the Marine Corps.
- Jon Bridgers of the Cajun Navy, which provided aid to Hurricane Harvey victims.
- Firefighter David Daklberg, who helped save lives fighting the California wildfires.
- Ashlee Leppert, a Coast Guard technician credited with rescuing dozens during the 2017 hurricane season.
- Agent C.J. Martinez, an immigration officer who helped arrest more than 100 MS-13 gang members.
- Preston Sharp, 12, who organizes a program to deliver flags and flowers to the graves of U.S. soldiers.
*with files from the Associated Press
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