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11-year-old skips birthday party to honor police officers

LANSING, Mich. -- It's not unusual for police to get called to a party, but what was unusual about a party in Lansing, Michigan ... is that it was in their honor. It was a police thank-you party, put on by a most unlikely host.

"I'm throwing them the thank you party to show them I still appreciate them," said Jeremie Bordua.

In the midst of all those police protests last year, 11-year-old Jeremie, who had wanted to be a police officer, asked his mom Marcella if he picked the wrong profession.

"He goes 'Mom, the cops are still the good guys, right?' And I said, 'Yeah, there are some bad police officers, and then there's still the good ones that are trying to protect themselves.'"

Jeremie got that. But he still didn't like the good being lumped in with the bad. So to rectify the situation, he told his mom that for his next birthday, all he wanted was to throw a thank-you party for police -- assuming they would come.

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Jeremie shakes hands with Gary Hall, who flew in from Los Angeles for the party
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"I didn't know it was going to be this big, really," Jeremie said when he saw the turn out.

Once word got out, more than a hundred officers responded. And not just from Lansing, but from all over the state of Michigan. Deputy James Revell drove there from Georgia.

"Because he saw not every police officer is bad. We're human beings and that's what he sees in us," Revell explained about why he came all the way to Michigan.

"Here's one person that really recognizes what we are truly out here to do," another officer said.

"There just aren't kids like that," said Gary Hall, who flew in from Los Angeles.

"I've got to tell you," he said to Jeremie, "how much this really means to us and how humble you are."

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Jeremie received his own uniform and badge from the Lansing Police Department

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The kid has no idea the depth of their gratitude -- no idea at all.

But he was about to find out. See, to help make all this happen, Jeremie not only gave up his party, but his presents as well. So in appreciation for that sacrifice, the Lansing Police Department made him an honorary member of their force. They gave him a real uniform right down to the badge.

Last year at this time, Jeremie wasn't sure he wanted to be a cop. But now, he is unwavering.

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  • Steve Hartman

    Steve Hartman has been a CBS News correspondent since 1998, having served as a part-time correspondent for the previous two years.