Community Mourns Orlando Police Officer Lt. Debra Clayton
by Karen V. Contino
Orlando Police Lt. Debra Clayton leaves a legacy of bravery, community activism and a smile that could transcend barriers.
“She was a role model for so many and a mother figure to some of the young girls, who would turn to Debra for advice,” said Orlando Police Chief John Mina at Clayton’s funeral service, where he posthumously promoted her from the rank of master sergeant to lieutenant. “And who wouldn’t be put at ease when faced with Debra’s infectious smile? I’ve heard from many kids this week that when Debra smiled, no matter what you were feeling about law enforcement, you had to smile back. Debra knew that something as simple as a smile could lead to a real connection, and I’ve never known anyone better at building those bonds.”