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Family thanks deputy for comforting 3-year-old burn victim

Posted at 4:36 AM, Jul 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-29 04:36:25-04

WAKULLA COUNTY, Fla. (WTXL) — It only takes a click, you see those words on captions all the time over Facebook and Twitter.

But it actually took 349 clicks for Brittany and Mike Finch to find the hero who responded to their emergency call.

With the click of a flashlight, 3- year-old Lyrik Finch feels at ease.

"He has not put that flashlight down," said Brittany Finch.

It may seem like an odd comfort token for a child, but it's the story behind the flashlight that means so much.

"The deputy handed him a flashlight in the ambulance and it was a savior," said Finch.

While working out in the yard with his dad on July 21, Lyrik accidentally threw gasoline on a fire.

"The fire caught me on fire," said Lyrik.

"He didn't want his binky. I thought that was his comfort token. That's what I immediately ran into the house to grab," said Finch.

Deputy Ronald Mitchell keeps a teddy bear in his patrol car for situations like this one.

But with so much going on, he didn't have time to go back to grab it.

"I turned it on. I handed it to him and I said this flashlight has protected me. It'll protect you. When it's really bad, shine it on your wounds. It's a magic flashlight," said Deputy Mitchell.

In the midst of taking care of her son, Brittany Finch didn't get the deputy's name.

So we went to Facebook to see if someone could help her out.

"So many times when we close those doors, the story ends for us," said Michell.

Luckily this story didn't end when those doors closed.

Thanks to Facebook, they were able to reunite.

The touching story even inspired Sheriff Jared Miller to write a letter for Lyrik. The staff at WCSO all signed a card for him, and the office donated money to help with Lyrik's medical expenses.

"To serve the community is our goal," said Deputy Mitchell.

With one simple act, Deputy Mitchell met that goal.

Lyrik is scheduled to go back to Gainesville for a follow appointment Wednesday.

Deputy Mitchell promises to continue to check in on him.