WEST FRANKFORT, IL (KFVS) - A West Frankfort boy with special needs was celebrating his 13th birthday on Saturday, October 29 when it suddenly took quite an amazing turn.
Before Spencer had his big party, he wanted as many friends to join him - including police officers.
Not knowing if any officers would show up, Spencer wrote out some "Notice to Appear" citations as invitations to area police officers.
Spencer has always loved law enforcement and idolized officers. He even hopes to become one himself one day.
Blitz Dugout Owner Stephanie Thompson said they had the party reserved for Spencer and expected a great turnout with family and friends, but said she never expected this.
"That party will probably be the party of the century," Thompson said.
Spencer has autism, and Thompson said it is unlikely that he will ever become a police officer. But that isn't stopping Spencer. He still plans on working with law enforcement one day. He has even studied the Miranda rights and knows the inner workings of what it takes to become an officer of the law.
"He wants to be a policeman," Thompson said. "He has incredible memory. He had no idea these officers were coming."
Originally, West Frankfort police officers Nate Burnette and James Trogolo were set to appear at the party to drop off some pizza as a surprise visit for Spencer. Some people knew they were coming to do that, but they didn't expect what happened next.
"22 cars, officers in uniform and squad cars came back and parked in the back," Thompson said. "We didn't know they were coming. They came through the back."
The back garage door opened up and officers from West Frankfort, Christopher, Franklin County, Zeigler, Royalton and Buckner, as well as troopers with the Illinois State Police, all came in as Spencer stood in shock.
Officers presented Spencer with two gifts, a flag with the officers' signatures on it and also a jacket with patches on it from each department.
Spencer was thrilled as the off duty officers spent the day with him playing basketball with him and his friends, sharing stories and even letting Spencer turn on the sirens and arrest an officer.
"People were in tears," Thompson added. "They are our heroes and they showed up. It was epic!"