The last thing any kid growing up in the streets of Pittsburgh wants is to be sitting at a table across veteran cop Jack Mook. But 15 year old Josh and his 11 year old brother Jesse sat in the courtroom on 16 Sep to be officially adopted by the tough, by-the-book no-nonsense cop. But while his rigid exterior may give off slightly eerie vibes, the man is a real softie inside.
Jack met the kids at the gym
In his free time, Jack Mook volunteers at the local gym teaching kids how to throw up a real punch when push comes to shove. The gym is mostly a place where relatively poor kids show up for practice, and that's where he met the two brothers he would one day adopt.
Jack was a part time boxing coach
Jack is part of a non-profit organization at the gym, and their main purpose is to divert the attention of young kids away from the criminal elements which plague the streets of Philadelphia. "We teach them respect, accountability and just how to live a better life."
One day the kids didn't turn up at the gym
Jack felt something was wrong when his two favorite gym partners stopped showing up for training sessions. And so he decided to put his detective skills to work and tracked down the boys to a foster home. Jack was shocked to learn their living situation.
His heart oozed with empathy
Jesse and Josh were living with their foster mother and father in what he describes as a 'dilapidated home filled with roaches, rats.' The kids were also being subject to extreme neglect and abuse by their foster parents.
"The kid never cried"
Jack finally tracked down Josh to his school and took him in his car. The poor kid was so run down and depressed that he just broke down and started crying. "...he just started crying in the car. The kid never cried." Admits Jack.
The kid didn't even have a bed
Conditions were so desperate for the two brothers that they didn't even have a proper bed to sleep in. For six years they used a worn out and broken down couch as a makeshift bed. Jack could not bear the thought of the two brothers toiling any more.
So Jack pulled in some favors
In order to rescue the kids from their troubles, Jack used his connections as a detective to pull in some favors. He eventually got them a roof over their heads, but he had an even better plan in store for the boys.
He finally decided to adopt them
"You're a Mook . Alright? You happy? Good." Explains Jack Mook to the boys. The committed bachelor sealed the deal by finally taking things one step further - by legally becoming their foster parent. "Now you're going to go home and cut my grass."
But it was not an easy process for the cop
Despite being their foster parent, health insurance has been an issue for Mook. When Jack took the boys to the ER one day he was denied care. So the cop pulled some strings and managed to get the boys health insurance as well.
Jack Mook even tried to learn cooking
In order to provide the kids with fresh and wholesome meals on the table, Jack decided to crank his cooking skills up a notch. "But that doesn't mean I'm not loving it." "It's the best thing I did in my life." Says Jack.
CBS was the first story to air this news
When the story first hit the spotlight in 2014, CBS actually received a lot of mail , mainly from Jack's secret admirers. They all wanted to date the cop who was tough on the outside but soft on the inside. But Jack wasn't interested.
Jack Mook's no nonsense approach to life
Jack is a tough man. So tough in fact, that he never allowed relationships to slow him down from catching criminals. The 45 year old bachelor never allowed his soft side to show up - a very stoic individual.
The committed bachelor finally got hitched
But not too soon after taking the boys in, Jack Mook actually got married. The cop who was known to be a staunch bachelor met Mary in a bar. Mary brought three little children of her own making the Mooks a traditional All-American suburban family.
Child abuse in the USA
You would be surprised to find out exactly how many kids in the USA are subject to child abuse. In fact, over 3.6 million referrals have been made to child protection agencies every single year, involving over 6.5 million children!
The United States is the worst offender
Among developed and industrialized nations, the United States has some of the worst statistics for child abuse. A report of child abuse and neglect is made every day to child protection agencies, an alarming figure which should give us all food for thought.
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