Patrick Zamarripa, one of the five Dallas police officers who was shot and killed during a peaceful protest rally on Thursday, July 7, once had a chance encounter — and photo op — with Cuba Gooding Jr.
In the bittersweet snapshot, which the 32-year-old officer posted to Twitter in February, he and his partner are all smiles as they pose for a selfie with the People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story star.
“The great @cubagoodingjr,” Zamarripa excitedly captioned the photo. “Thanx for taking the pic with my partner and I. Hope your stay in #Dallas was great sir!”
Zamarripa was the second slain officer to be identified in the tragic shootings, which were carried out by a suspect who has been identified as 25-year-old Micah Xavier Johnson.
The first identified officer was Brent Thompson of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit, a newlywed who tied the knot with his wife, a fellow officer, within the previous two weeks.
According to The Washington Post, Zamarripa had served three tours in Iraq and had only recently begun to work as a bike officer in the downtown area where the shootings took place.
“He comes to the United States to protect people here,” his dad, Rick Zamarripa, told The Washington Post on Friday. “And they take his life.”
Zamarripa has pledged his love for the country on social media before, with one of his last tweets a tribute to America on the 4th of July.
“Happy Birthday to the greatest country on the face of this planet,” he tweeted on Monday, July 4. “My beloved America!”