When Zac Rand rolls into a Valley skate park, it doesn’t take long for his presence to turn heads.
“It’s a different way of interacting with the community for sure,” said Rand.
Not only does the Maricopa County sheriff’s deputy have the skills to rip, but the perfect personality to build bridges in unlikely places.
“I’m not in here to see what’s going on, I’m in here to truly have an impact with these kids, have conversations,” said Rand.
Over the last year, he’s hosted “Kick Flips and Donuts” at more than a half dozen Valley skate parks, gliding alongside fellow boarders and getting a chance to show a different side of law enforcement.
“If a kid needs a new board, we do what we can to get him a new board, trucks, wheels, grip tape, shoes, any of that. I try and take care of it,” said Rand.
The money it takes to do it is raised through T-shirts he designs and sells through his Instagram account. At this point he’s been able to give away more than seventy boards.
“When I was a kid, the skate park or the skate shop was a place for me to escape reality, be around people who understood what I love doing because they love doing the same thing,” said Rand.
His moves on the black top are now going viral. We got to see the impact he’s having firsthand at Goodyear Skate Park Wednesday when he spotted one skater in basketball shoes.
“Do you not have skate shoes?” asked Rand.
“No I don’t,” said Lukas Bradley.
“What size shoe do you wear?”
“Eleven and a half,” said Bradley.
A quick trip to his trunk and the magic behind the mission is revealed.
“Here ya go man, try these out, I rode them once, brand new Kyle Walkers,” said Rand handing over the shoes to the beaming skater.
“It’s cool to see officers at the park, just out doing other things as well because them feel more approachable,” said Bradley who put the shoes on immediately.
And with each approach, new trust is born. Something Rand hopes lasts a lifetime
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