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HCSO deputy featured in Super Bowl ad for heroic efforts during Hurricane Harvey speaks out

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas – Today, Harris County sheriff’s Deputy Rick Johnson is fielding a different type of call.

The calls are to congratulate him on being featured in a Super Bowl ad last night.

“When it aired, of course, my phone blew up,” Johnson said. “It blew up because of the picture and the picture is just me doing my job.”

It was just after halftime when a Verizon commercial aired thanking first responders for "answering the call" in times of crisis.

A photo of Johnson was featured in the ad, rescuing two children from the floods of Hurricane Harvey. 

A man’s voice can be heard saying, “I don't know if you remember me but my kids remember you.”

Johnson said another deputy snapped photos of that day.  

A spokesperson for Verizon told KPRC that they had teams of people go through news accounts looking for first responder pictures that stood out for their Super Bowl commercial. It was just after Harvey when they came across Johnson’s photo and they felt it was one of those photos that becomes ingrained in people’s memories.

Johnson remembers that day clearly. The water was rising quickly. They were in a rescue truck with 6-foot wheels and had just driven into the Blackhorse Ranch Subdivision. The water was high on their tires and a mom was outside waiting for help. That’s when Johnson waded into the waters.

“Went out there,” Johnson said. “Helped her out. Helped her kids. Helped to get everybody out of the house, made it to safety and here we are today.”

Johnson insists this honor isn't about him, it’s about his fellow first responders.

“Today is not about me, it's about everybody,” Johnson said. “We all did this together so I want to represent for the county, not just myself … like I said behind me there were 1,000 other individuals doing the same thing.”