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Police Officers Can be the Good Guys!

December 26, 2016

A foster mom was pulled over by a Tennessee Highway Patrol officer who questioned her about her lack of car seats.  “Why are the two boys in the back seat not in car seats?” the officer asked.   She responded the two little boys were her foster sons who she’d just
gotten less than 24 hours earlier.  She showed the officer her paperwork and explained the boys came with only the clothes they were wearing, and no car seats, no toys, no coats, nothing.

The foster mom was expecting to get a ticket or at the very least a lecture from the officer.  Instead, Officer Tidwell asked for her phone number and Mrs. Tidwell, the officer’s wife, called her back asking about the boys.  

A short time later officer’s wife called her back wanting to meet with her.  It wasn't long before the foster mom found out why.   Officer Tidwell and his wife had purchased gifts for the boys. Not just the two boys in the back seat but their older brother too.  The foster mom was taken completely by surprise.

 “I can’t thank him enough for the kindness he has shown these three boys. I never asked him for anything. He and his wife acted out of the kindness of their hearts,” she said. 
Even better than the gift was the lesson it provided for the three boys: that there are very nice police officers out there.  “The boys have been telling everyone that 'cops are nice.' He has made their day,” the foster mom said.

Closer to home we see members of Galveston PD and other law enforcement agencies teaming up with the Lighthouse Charity Team to bring Blue Santa to the community.

Each year the number of less fortunate children increases and each year gifts of every shape and size are gathered at the Lighthouse facility on the Island.  Teams of people wrap the gifts and tag them for delivery to needy families.   Then officers and members of the Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association fan out across the Island delivering these gifts to children -- many of whom are wide eyed -- and appreciative parents, many of whom have a hard time fighting back tears. 

So why do these officers/volunteers go out of their way, spending their own time and money to lend a helping hand?  To some it’s simply wanting to give back to the community.  Some may have been the recipient of similar acts of kindness when they were younger.  And to others they realize the gifts God has given them and they want to bless to others.  Regardless of the reason(s) it’s
the right thing to do.  Additionally, giving often blesses the giver as much that the recipient.

Being a police officer is often a thankless job and they often don’t get the recognition they deserve.  The next time you see a police officer thank him/her for putting his/her life on the line for you and if you get the chance be there for them as they’re there for you!

Bill, Mark and John

The Story of Blue Santa on Galveston Island

The annual Blue Santa program takes lots of people volunteering their time, donating gifts, wrapping them, selecting them for specific children, and then delivering them to the intended recipient. It is a team effort with volunteers from the Galveston Police Department, the Lighthouse Charity Team and countless other volunteers. This album will take you from start to finish showing the various stages in this teambuilding effort.

Bicycles and Toys everywhere at the Lighthouse Charity Team's facility in Galveston Photo #1:
Here are the bicycles and other gifts donated by generous people all across Galveston County.





Captian Larry Chambers assembling tricycles.Photo #2:
"Some Assembly Required!" Captain Larry Chambers of the Galveston Police Department has become an expert in putting tricycles together!













The wrapping area where toys are prepared for deliveryPhoto #3:
The next step in the process is to wrap presents. You can see the magnitude of how many people it takes to get this all done in a very short period of time. This is a beehive of activity!


Voluntees select the perfect toy for each child by age and genderPhoto #4:
The next step is to select just the right gift for the individual recipient(s). Each bag will contain gift for children of different ages and gender. These folks are matching the appropriate gift to the child (or children) who will be receiving it (them).










After craming bags of toys into the Citizens on Patrol Car it was off to deliver the presents!Photo #5:
Next its time to load the presents into the vehicle(s) for delivering the presents to homes all across the city. Did you know there is a limit to how many gift bags you can fit into a police car?
Then with the lists of where the deliveries are to be made, we are off. 

End of the day: COP Car at the 61st Street Park as the sun sets over Offits Bayou.Photo #6:
As the sun starts to set, the deliveries for the day are over. Thinking back, perhaps those of us who were involved were as blessed as those who got the gifts. The children looked on with wide eyes and excitment; some of the thankful parents had a hard time holding back the tears; and to be honest, in some cases so did we. Christmas is about God's gift to us and how we can share His gift with others.

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