GAINESVILLE, Fla. (CBSLA/AP) — Sheriff’s officials say a woman whose car was left stranded along a Florida interstate when her tire blew out got a little unexpected help from former Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal.
O’Neal, who lives in the Orlando area, was traveling on Interstate 75 near Gainesville on Monday when he saw the woman pull onto the side of the road, the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office said on a Facebook post.
According to the post, O’Neal “stopped to check on the welfare of the driver and remained with her until law enforcement arrived. He fist bumped Deputies Purington and Dillon before going on his way.”
In the video posted to Facebook, deputies thanked O’Neal for his assistance. The driver is heard telling deputies that the tire blew out, forcing her to pull over and that O’Neal stopped to help.
“Hey Basketball Cop Foundation you’re not the only one that knows Shaq,” the Sheriff’s Office said.
O’Neal is no stranger to public service: in 2019, the NBA’s eighth all-time leading scorer became an auxiliary deputy for the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, about 300 miles south of Alachua County.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)