After a quick seminar on their assignments, the deputies from Patterson Police fanned out throughout the city to pick up 19 needy children that were identified through schools and other public agencies of not getting much for Christmas. The deputies pulled up in patrol cars and S.W.A.T. units, taking the children to Wal-Mart to shop for clothes and outside winter gear.
“We have jobs and we are a little more fortunate,” Jeannie Kelley, who works in Patterson Police Records, said. “The children were so excited to get new clothes.”
Patterson Police School Resource Officer Adam Basmajian said he was struck by the emotional expressions on the children’s faces when they found out they were getting new clothes and shoes.
“Hugo (10 years-old) didn’t know his size. He said he’d been given his clothes,” Basmajian said. “It was neat to give back.”
Police Records employee Raschel Johnson, who helped organize the event for Patterson Police Services, said the community and police, including the Stanislaus County K-9 Foundation, contributed some $3,200 to the cause. Eleven Patterson High School students from their Ambassador program also helped take the children shopping.
“To help 19 kids out the first year is a great turnout,” Johnson said. “It was fun. Special thanks to Wal-Mart, also, who donated $25 gift certificates to each child.” Deputies and staff then reconvened at Father Conner’s Hall at Sacred Heart Church for a pizza party with the children and their parents, where special guest Santa made an appearance and brought more Christmas cheer.
Police, courts and government reporter Nick Rappley can be reached at 209-568-9975 or firstname.lastname@example.org.