There are certain rules among high school students that they all follow: never remind the teacher she forgot to assign homework, always be friendly to kids with cars, and try to avoid the police at all times.
However, one fall night in Atacosa County, Texas, a group of students at Poteet High School playing the drums saw a uniformed Sheriff’s Deputy approaching them and they had no way out. Not knowing he was being filmed, he approached the percussion players in the high school band.
It was at a high school football game, and the students in question were members of the Poteet High School band’s drum line. Only instead of coming to tell the kids to keep it down, Deputy A.J. Mendez grabbed some sticks and joined in.
Deputy Mendez stood with them and played along as they did their thing, keeping perfect time with them. The Poteet High School band is an award-winning group known for their elaborate field performances during halftime.
However, Mendez obviously has spent some time perfecting his drumming craft as well. He is able to keep pace with them, and then he improvised a drum solo during the performance. It’s almost as if he’d practiced the routine with them, but he didn’t.
The real story is much more interesting.
Before he was a Deputy Sheriff, A.J. was once a kid growing up in the town just like the students he played with.
While attending Poteet High School, where he graduated as a member of the class of 2005, A.J. was – you guessed it – a member of the high school band. But that’s not all.
The cadence that they were playing dates back to his days with the squad, and not only that, he co-wrote the piece of music still in use today.
Atacosa Sheriff’s Office Public Information officer Amanda Beltran confirmed this account to MySanAntonio.com, adding:
“I think it’s outstanding that he wrote that and they’re still playing it.”
We think it’s pretty outstanding, too. It’s so important for people to see their law enforcement officials as not just authority figures, but a part of the community they serve. Well done, Deputy Mendez!
You can watch the full performance below: