By Chris Eversole
The Yukon Police Department helped make Christmas merrier Saturday for 32 children through its Christmas with a Cop event.
State troopers and volunteers from Yukon’s Citizens’ Police Academy and the National Honor Society at Yukon High School helped provide presents for the children and their families.
The day began with a breakfast at the police department provided by Chick-fil-A.
The officers then helped the kids shop at Target from lists they had made for themselves and their families.
Everyone returned to police department to wrap the gifts, which was made possible by about $8,000 in donations from the public, according to Susie Wright, administrative assistant to Police Chief John Corn.
The scene was lively, with the hosts and their guests building rapport as they shopped together.
“You’ll need two more labels, one for you and one for sis,” one officer said.
“You wrap these, and I’ll wrap yours,” another said.
State trooper Scott Patton said this is the eighth year that he’s participated in Yukon’s Christmas with a Cop event.
“It’s good to spend time with the kids,” he said. “It’s great to see a smile on their faces.
“We talk about them and their families.”
Yukon police Lt. Mike Walker was in his fifth year at the event.
“It’s pretty rewarding to hang out with the kids,” he said.
“We build a relationship. When we see them in the community, they’re waving and happy to see us.”
Otis Davenport, who heads the alumni group of the Citizens’ Police Academy, was one of the organizers.
“We’re able to help the community by helping the police department,” he said.
Jackie, a mother who was picking up her son, said the event was very helpful.
“It’s hard for me to take him shopping with me,” she said. “Now, I’ll know nothing about what he got me.”
Sgt. Trudy Patterson enjoyed working with a young lady.
“The kids have fun, and it builds a bond,” she said.
“It’s good that there’s not always negative behavior involved when they see cops.”