The police incident commander for the Rodes City Run in Louisville, Ky., on Saturday went a long way beyond the call of duty when he saw a runner struggling around 2 miles from the finish line. After Asia Ford insisted that she was determined to finish the 10K race despite having trouble breathing, police Lt. Aubrey Gregory took her hand and helped her all the way to the finish line, reports the Louisville Courier-Journal. Ford tells WHAS11 that the race was the latest milestone in a weight-loss campaign that began when her husband lost a limb to diabetes. At her heaviest, she weighed 474 pounds, but she has lost more than 200 pounds in two years, Today reports.
After crossing the finish line with help from Gregory and her son Terrance, Ford described the officer as her "angel." Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, who shared photos of the finish that went viral on social media, plans to recognize Ford and Gregory at an event today, reports the Courier-Journal. Gregory says being able to help people the way he helped Ford is the reason he's a police officer. "Watching her cross the finish line, I felt it all over," he tells WAVE 3. "It was a great moment and I'm glad she let me be a part of it." (Earlier this month, a Marine who revived after drowning completed the Phoenix Marathon.)