What little girl doesn’t love a good tea party? When that little girl is lucky to be alive, and her guest of honor is the man who saved her life, the event takes on a much greater significance.
Corporal Patrick Ray and two-year-old Bexley Norvell taking afternoon tea. Chelle Cates Photography.
On July 17, two-year-old Bexley Norvell and Police Cpl. Patrick Ray sat down for afternoon tea together to celebrate the anniversary of the day Ray saved Bexley’s life. Just a year earlier, the then 22-month-old lost consciousness after an afternoon playing outside with her family. A frantic call to the Rowlett, Texas Police Department was responded to by Ray, who reached the house in just 3 minutes and, using the finger-sweep method, was able to clear a blockage (which turned out to be a swallowed penny). The entire rescue was captured by the body camera that Ray was wearing.
Bexley’s mother, Tammy Norvell, never wants to forget that day.
“[It’s] right up there with my children’s births,” she told The Huffington Post. “It has made me want to change people’s images and thoughts about these men and women that serve us every day.”
Having two small children of his own, Officer Ray told the local CBS station that all he could think about during those moments was his own family. He gladly accepted Bexley’s recent tea party invitation, even though he expected some teasing from his colleagues.
“I’m sure I’m probably going to get a tea set or something,” he told CBS DFW, adding, “We’re buddies. I can watch her get married. I can watch her have a family. She could have lost her life that day, and I got super lucky.”
The tea party was captured for posterity by McKinney, Texas-based child photographer Chelle Cates, and photos posted on the Rowlett Police Department’s Facebook site.
Sources: The Huffington Post, CBS DFW