7-year-old with Spinal Muscular Atrophy sworn in as NYPD officer for a day

Kemberly Richardson Image
Monday, July 26, 2021
Dream come true: 7-year-old sworn in as NYPD officer for a day
Jose Zelaya uses a wheelchair due to Spinal Muscular Atrophy, but his lifelong dream is to be a police officer.

UPPER WEST SIDE, Manhattan (WABC) -- A 7-year-old boy from the Bronx had his dream come true Monday, as the NYPD made him an honorary officer for the day.

Jose Zelaya uses a wheelchair due to Spinal Muscular Atrophy, but his lifelong dream is to be a cop.

He got the royal treatment at the NYPD's Transit District 1 in Manhattan, where he was sworn in to uphold the law.

"When he was in pre-K, he said he wanted to be a police officer," mom Heidy Nunez said. "And then had career day, and he wanted to dress as a police officer."

ALSO READ | Teen takes ride of a lifetime thanks to MTA

Cole Moreshead's dream has always been to ride the train at Grand Central Terminal, a place people usually pass through to get somewhere else. But for the 14-year-old, Grand Center is the destination.

Officers spent the afternoon showing him the ropes at Columbus Circle, and Nunez said Jose will never forget the experience.

He is a boy who's traveled a rough road in his short life.

"He was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy as a fetus," Nunez said. "They told me he was going to die at 3 months old."

But Jose has defied the odds, and now, he's fulfilled another lifelong dream.

"It makes me feel great to know we can reach out and touch somebody's life the way we have," NYPD Captain Kenneth Gorman said.

ALSO READ | Eli Manning, New York Giants help posthumously grant NJ girl's Make-A-Wish

Eli Manning and the New York Giants teamed with Make-A-Wish New Jersey to posthumously honor the wish of a 2-year-old girl who recently died of brain cancer.

When Nunez was 5, she wrote a note to her mom saying she also wanted to be a police officer. And she is also well on her way, having recently embarked on joining the force herself.

"I also took the NYPD exam June 21, so it's just a waiting game now," she said.

For now, Jose is simply soaking up every second of his very special day.


* Get Eyewitness News Delivered

* More Manhattan news

* Send us a news tip

* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts

* Follow us on YouTube

Submit a News Tip