Westbury High School sophomore Elkuin Rosales and Nassau police officer Matteo Gaudio went to Walmart on Thursday in search of a Christmas tree.

Elkuin also hunted for a gift for his mother, and bought a video game for himself as Gaudio looked on, chiming in with tips and suggestions. At first glance, the pair looked like any other father and son or uncle and nephew on a holiday shopping spree.

In reality, the uniformed cop and the high school student were just getting to know each other. They perused the Westbury Walmart store's aisles together as part of Nassau County’s "Shop with a Cop" — a holiday-themed event for 50 students in the Westbury School District from homes with limited extra money for the holidays.

Elkuin, with a donated $150 gift card at the ready, said shopping for a Christmas tree and presents gave him "a sense of normalcy."

"My mom was excited for me. She wanted me to have fun and always come home with a smile," he said. "My mom likes Christmas angels … Our apartment’s small and can’t fit a big tree. This year, she just wants to spend time with me drinking juice and eating cookies."

The event was hosted by the Nassau County Police Foundation, which selected 10 students from five schools in the district and provided each with a $150 gift card.

"They don’t come with a list of toys, they may come with home goods they need," said foundation director Alexandra Nigolian. "They’re not just buying toys, they’re buying gifts for their mothers, fathers and siblings. They’re buying home goods. It’s really heartfelt to see what they’re doing, but at the same time you realize the struggles they have."

Students were met at the Walmart store by Nassau police officers and a SWAT vehicle filled with cops looking like Halloween holdovers — they greeted the excited students dressed as superheroes — Batman, Black Panther, Captain America, Chewbacca from "Star Wars," The Flash, Spiderman, Superman and Wonder Woman.

"That's your police department," Nassau Police Commissioner Pat Ryder told the students outside the store. "They’re here to take you shopping for some great gifts."

Ryder made his comments amid a pep rally atmosphere and Leo the Lion, the police department's mascot, grinning and decked out for the season in a Santa outfit.

"These kids need us to help them," Ryder said in an interview. "They want us to be a part of that nurturing. We’re building bridges and I see the future police department. Those kids in there are the community we police, so when they see a cop respond to their house and help their family in need, they know we’re the good guys to be part of their lives."

The Westbury students were "identified by their respective schools as meeting the criteria for this event," Nassau police said in a statement.

If shoppers came in over the $150 limit at the cash register, the foundation covered essential items like food or toothpaste, Nigolian said.

Monica Alvarado, 10, a fifth-grader at Drexel Avenue School, bought a stuffed Peppa Pig and clothes for her family.

"It’s an incredible opportunity and I’m pretty grateful for giving me the chance to buy all these things," Monica said.

Her school counselor, Lisa Maldonado, took photos of Monica shopping with Police Officer Jay Williams.

"A lot of families lost their jobs and wages. There are a lot of challenges at home and this is a great opportunity to shop and give back to kids and families in need," Maldonado said. "Just to see her eyes light up, even in a mask, you can tell she’s smiling and will never forget this experience as long as she lives."

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