A committed PCSO has been isolating from his family during CoVID-19 to keep patrolling the beat while protecting his ill son from the virus.
Police Community Support Officer William Till moved out of his Stourbridge home at the start of April and has been living alone in a nearby flat.
His seven-year-old son Alfie was shielding following surgery to remove growths on his brain caused by mastoiditis − and Will knew he couldn’t risk potentially bringing coronavirus back home.
He took the heart-wrenching decision to move out while he helped with our coronavirus policing effort in his Wolverhampton city centre patch.
But last weekend, with shielding restrictions eased, he was able to move back home for a long overdue group hug.
“It’s one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make", said Will, who’s been a PCSO in the city centre for just over two years having previously been a teaching assistant.
“I popped over for regular chats through the patio door but of course it all had to be socially distanced with no physical contact.
“Watching my children cry when I had to say goodbye was heart-breaking, not being able to hold them, but I knew it was the right thing to do.
“I wanted to keep working as part of the team. It was for times like these where communities need our support that I joined the police and accepted I had to sacrifice contact with my wife and children."
Since lockdown Will, aged 42, has been on the beat in key locations including the hospital and food banks educating people about the pandemic and encouraging them to adhere to the distancing rules.
But with conditions gradually returning to a new normal Will is getting back into his routine as a link officer to Wolverhampton University and working with retailers.
And of course he’s delighted at getting the green light to move back home last Sunday.
“It’s amazing to be back home," he added. “I had a few days off for lots of cuddles and family time but was back on the beat on Thursday!"
Neighbourhood Policing Sergeant Sean Corrigan paid tribute to PCSO Till’s dedication.
He said: “What Will has done over the last 15 weeks is testament to his community spirit and dedication to policing and serving the public of Wolverhampton.
“He paid for a room in a nearby house and restricted contact with his family through a patio door in order to continue working and ensuring he didn’t pose a virus risk to his wife and children.
“That’s an incredible sacrifice. He truly is an unsung hero of West Midlands Police."