Kind heart goes past call of duty

Merrylands constable Scott Hartigan will be terribly embarrassed to see his picture and name in the paper.

The Merrylands police officer might even start to blush when he signs into Facebook and learns that more than 500,000 people know about his good deed.

It all started when the 24-year-old received a call from a distressed young boy who had his bike stolen while he was riding at Holroyd Gardens.

The 13-year-old was sitting on a table resting when someone came up from behind, grabbed his bike and rode away.

When Constable Hartigan went to the boy's house to make a report, he heard both of the boy's parents had died in an accident. The 13-year-old lives with his sisters and grandmother.

Constable Hartigan didn't leave his work at the office that day.

He went home, researched bikes online, bought a new one and took it to the delighted boy's house on his day off from duty.

And he thought he had got away with his good deed without anyone knowing until the boy's grandmother rang the station to say thank you.

A single Facebook post later by his colleagues on the Holroyd local area command page and Constable Hartigan found himself a reluctant hero.

The Facebook post about his kindness attracted 25,000 "likes", was commented on more than 1400 times, shared nearly 3000 times and viewed by half a million people.

Constable Hartigan said he didn't want any fuss made about his actions but was happy by the positive response from the public.

He only agreed to photographs and a picture with the Sun after an encouraging nudge from his supervisors.

"He was such a good kid and then after I heard the story he was still so positive that I just kept thinking about what I could do to help," Constable Hartigan said.

"When I dropped it off he was at school but his grandmother said he screamed so loud when he got home that she thought the neighbours must have heard."

Constable Hartigan has kept in contact with the boy.

"I go around there still. I went around there the other week and they gave me a card to say thank you and a little gift. I'll probably stay in touch whenever I can," he said.

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