Humble as he may be, Ian Hinton, a 37-year-old California man, is being hailed as an unlikely hero.
After 17-year-old Charles Truong — a teenager on the autism spectrum — went missing at a local supermarket in Garden Grove, Officer David Chang approached Hinton with a photograph of Truong. According to KTLA, Hinton is “well-known transient” in the area.
Several hours later, Hinton happened to come across a scared teenager near an intersection. Recognizing the teen as the boy in the photo, Hinton began to request the help of strangers to contact authorities.
He was ignored by two strangers whom he asked for help, but Hinton didn’t give up. Finally, a kind lady stepped in and called the police. Shortly thereafter, a distressed Truong was reunited with his mother.
Hinton and the woman are being honored by the police department at a dinner next week. But Hinton doesn’t think of himself as a hero. He says he was just doing what any other kind person would do in a similar situation.
“I just went out of my way to be a Good Samaritan,” he told KTLA.
To others in the community, Hinton’s selfless act was certainly commendable, which is why he was honored with the Chief’s Coin for Merit. Officer Chang summed it up well:
“You can make a difference,” said Chang. “It might not be for anything in return, but you can definitely change someone’s life and he did.”