Local woman receives plaque for doing what many won’t –helping someone in crisis

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By Alice Du Pont

Velma Brown did something not many people do these days – when she spotted trouble she got involved.

To show his appreciation, Quincy Police Chief Ferman Richardson invited her to a meeting of the Quincy City Commission and presented her with a plaque.

Brown was driving down Lillian Springs Road around 7 p.m. Jan. 6 when she noticed a small child walking behind a woman who was walking very fast, and a man following her walking equally as fast. Neither of the adults, she said, seemed to notice that the child was following them.

"I kept going and when I passed the woman she had her arms folded as if she was carrying a small bundle. I looked in my rearview mirror and the man had run up behind her and yanked her around by the hair," she said.

That's when Brown turned her car around and went back to help the woman. She told the woman to get into the back seat of her car and went to call police. The bundle in the woman's arms was a 4-week-old baby. When police arrived the man had left the scene.

"People have asked me why I got involved. It may be because I didn't have the best childhood or because I've been in relationships that weren't very good. I don't know if it was the nurse in me or the mother in me. I just did it," Brown said.

Quincy City Manager Jack McLean thanked Brown and praised her for being a good citizen. He told her that police can't be everywhere and the department depends on citizens like her to be its eyes and ears in the community.

Brown received a standing ovation from people at the meeting.