The image of his people skills and the happiness that comes out of his pores when he began to dance while teaching traffic, make the recently retired Caguas municipal police officer, Ángel Lebrón Rivera, an unforgettable figure for all those who knew him or They simply follow him from their social networks.
“The Dancing Police”, as he wants to be remembered, spent the past 24 years of his career expressing his love to his neighbor with the phrase “I Love You”, distributing popsicles to children on Fridays and giving his dance steps, no matter the genre, to the sound that they played.
His career as a public servant began in 1986, working as a clerk I at the Caguas Diagnosis and Treatment Center, writing invoices and medical records. At the age of two, they told him about a course in medical emergencies and he studied during the day while working at night.
Nine months later, when he finished his studies, he was recruited by the medical director to work in the Emergency Room, where he worked for 10 years, until talk began about privatization and he took advantage of a call for the Caguas Municipal Police, receiving the move, until last week when he retired at 58 years of age.
“I take many beautiful experiences with me, and I take a lot with children and elderly people, I helped them cross the street. Sometimes I would stop to pass by in front of the Morales neighborhood and here is a building for the elderly and they would go up there and even ‘limbers’ would take me, kiss me, hug me. I also gave motivational talks in schools and a while ago a girl wrote to me, who is already in university, and she still remembers it, ”recalled Lebrón Rivera, who says he was born“ with music inside ”.
Although she acknowledges that she still feels strong and vocation to continue working, the need to take care of the health of her 83-year-old mother made her take that step.
“I was going to stay a little longer (working), but I have my mother living with me and since she is 83 years old, I take care of her, so I have to be very careful, because she has various conditions -such as diabetes and hypertension- and she is very active, just like me… I went out to her”, narrated Lebrón Rivera, who daily takes her to a club for the elderly so that she can share with her friends to ward off depression.
In a trip recalling his beginnings, he indicated that two years after starting in the Municipal Police he was transferred to the Motorized Unit and during that period he began to give traffic in the mornings, being assigned to the traffic light of the PR-183 highway in front of Oscar Cash & Carry. One day he passed a vehicle with loud music and started dancing… which he couldn’t stop for the next 24 years.
“I introduced the dance, but I had a lot of problems with my boss, because they saw that badly, because I was a police officer and it couldn’t be that, I didn’t quit, they scolded me, but I kept doing it until Mayor William Miranda Sr. He sent a letter congratulating me on how I gave the traffic”, according to what he said.
He explained that a psychologist who passed through his route on a daily basis had written a review of his work in a regional newspaper and his bosses stopped admonishing him.
Their social networks are also the vehicle for sending their messages of encouragement in the morning, thanking God, combined with humorous comments so that the new generations know the meaning that family has in their lives and love for their neighbor, since it has followers in Spain, Ecuador and Puerto Ricans living in the United States, among other countries.
look at the legislature
Now that he is retired, he confessed that he would like to occupy a position as a legislator to do social justice work and defend the municipal police officers “who are going through many vicissitudes because we do the same work as the state police, earning much less.”
“I would like to see if I fix these people who work more than for them. If I had the opportunity to be a politician, believe me, I am going to give everything to the people, because I am a person who likes to help, ”he replied.
However, her plans are to buy a taxi to have the flexibility to take her mother to the club and to her medical appointments while she works, since she retired with a pension of 30% of her salary, which is equivalent to $660 per month. She will take advantage of the money that she accumulated, since she never left to invest it.
Regarding the difficult situations in the performance of his work on the street, he overcame the danger clinging to his faith, because he considers that “I always had an angel behind me, because there were persecutions and all those things, but nothing to regret ever happened.”
“We are living in a society where people hate each other,” he reflected on the other side that lives in our streets and urged Puerto Ricans to take care of their family, because true love emanates from them, more than their work.
Lebrón Rivera, the son of public servants, says that he emulated the example and respect instilled by his mother, who was in charge of the school canteen at the Diego Vázquez de la Barriada Morales school for more than 30 years, and his father worked in the Department of Diets of the Regional Hospital of Caguas.
When asked to what music he retired, he confessed that he left crying moved by the tribute he received from his co-workers, since he was the oldest in the Motor Unit, to later add that his joy was expressed with steps to the rhythm of salsa and the music of the 80′s.
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