HOUSTON – Newly released photographs show now-President Joe Biden quietly visited an injured Houston police officer in the hospital a little more than a year ago.
Chief Art Acevedo posted two photos from Sept. 15, 2019, to Twitter on Wednesday, not long after Biden took the oath of office as president.
Officer Taylor Roccaforte was shot three times while pursuing a robbery suspect shortly after the Democratic debate in Houston in 2019. Biden asked to visit to “lift his spirits,” Acevedo wrote.
“It was very unexpected and it was special to me,” Taylor Roccaforte told KPRC 2 on Wednesday.
While some family and friends knew about the meeting at Memorial Hermann in the Texas Medical Center, the visit was largely unknown to most until now, the officer’s family said.
Samuel Roccaforte, Taylor’s father and a fellow HPD officer, said Biden didn’t want any press at the hospital.
“He didn’t want anybody to know about it,” Samuel Roccaforte said. “He just wanted to lift his spirits. It wasn’t political. The news media knew nothing about it till today, after the election.”
Taylor Roccaforte, who’s now working as a K-9 officer, said the visit was a special moment he’s kept for himself and his family.
“I’m not big into politics or anything like that so for it to just be me one-on-one with an ex-vice president sitting down with me at my hospital bed, that’s why it was special to me,” he said. “There’s no political message, none of that.”
The then-former vice president gave them a special coin and a memory that hasn’t been widely shared until now.
“It was really a nice time for us to see him there and was very calming for my son,” Samuel Roccaforte said.