Indiana State Trooper Surprises a Local Family on Christmas
As an Indiana State Trooper, Nicole Cheeks has seen it all. “Sometimes our jobs, it gets nasty,”said Cheeks,“But for the most part we’re dealing with 90 percent of good citizens out here. We prepare for the worst, but we usually end up getting the best.” Cheeks often patrols different parts of Terre Haute. It was in one of her neighborhoods that she met Jennifer Diekhoff and her children. “They’re good kids, they’re smart kids,” said Cheeks, “They introduced me to some things in Terre Haute that I wasn’t aware of.” One of those things being Shop With a Cop at Meijer, which happened in the middle of December. Cheeks says Diekhoff’s kids, Brandon and Hailee, told her about the event, asking her if she could be their shopping partner. However, the day of the event, the children were unable to attend. “They were really bummed out about not being able to go,” said Cheeks. Cheeks and her husband went back to Meijer following the event, picking up toys and toiletries. On Christmas Day, Cheeks delivered the load of gifts personally to the Diekhoff household. “I figured I could give back to them just for helping me,” said Cheeks. Watching the smiles of her children, Diekhoff says this Christmas is a dream come true. “It’s a blessing,” said Diekhoff, “I can’t even express how grateful we are, you know, it’s a Christmas miracle.” For 8-year-old Brandon Diekhoff and his 11-year-old sister, Hailee, it’s an experience they will always remember. When asked what they were going to say to Trooper Cheeks, in unison they said, “Thank you! You’re amazing.” In the midst of all the excitement and gifts, Cheeks hopes the Diekhoffs will unwrap the life lesson of paying it forward to others and helping those in need. “When those kids get older, they’ll do the same thing,” said Cheeks, “They’ll remember when ‘I wasn’t able to do something, someone stepped in and helped us out’ and they’ll continue to do that.”
Son of Fallen West Virginia State Trooper gets his Christmas Wish
The holiday season, for most, is a time of joy spent with friends and family, but for some it comes with a painful reminder of lost loved ones. In 2012, State Trooper Marshall Lee Bailey was shot and killed in the line of duty, leaving a family with a gaping hole. And for his seven year old son, Wyatt Bailey, the pain of losing his father hits hard during the Christmas season. So when he asked his mom if he could drive an Army truck for Christmas, the West Virginia National Guard was all too happy to help. When a child has a special wish for Christmas most parents will do whatever they can to make sure that wish comes true. For Wyatt’s mother, Tammy Bailey, her son was no exception. Wyatt's father was a state trooper who was shot and killed in 2012, and for Wyatt not having is father for Christmas has been extremely difficult. "We get a new ornament for his father every year and hang it up on the tree, he got really sad and stopped decorating and we talked about his dad and then later we started talking about what he wanted for Christmas and he started talking about the Army tanks,” Tammy Bailey said.Wyatt’s wish this year was to be in the Army and ride an Army truck; a unique wish that his mother was determined to make happen. "I had posted on Facebook if anybody knew how to make this happen, and a friend of mine Stefany Drake and her husband Jason got it started,” Tammy said.After a few connections, the West Virginia National Guard knew exactly how to make Wyatt’s dream a reality. Governor Earl Ray Tomblin invited Wyatt and his 9-year-old sister, Lauren, to the Capitol to give them a special title. "We made him the national adjunct general of the day and we presented him and Lauren with honorary Mountaineer Brigadier so they are now officially ambassadors for the National Guard every day,” Major General Jim Hoyer said.Wyatt was given an Army uniform and got to ride in military vehicles to the Charleston armory. For the rest of the day, Wyatt was put in charge of the soldiers and airman as they toured the base. For Wyatt and his family, this was the perfect Christmas gift. "I was happy and I was proud." General Hoyer plans to invite Wyatt and his entire school class to tour the base in the near future. Wyatt said his favorite memory from the day was getting to ride in the Humvee.
Massachusetts State Trooper Saves a Little Girl's Bear
Massachusetts State Trooper Dan Mather was driving on the interstate in Milford, Massachusetts when he saw a child’s teddy bear fly out the window of a car driving ahead of him and into traffic. What he did next made the day of a very happy little girl! Trooper Mather was able to retrieve the bear from the lane and return it to its rightful owner, Emma, and her parents, Scott and Beth. Emma was so thrilled that her mom sent a grateful note to Trooper Mather. She explained, “Emma has loved her polar bear for some time. He doesn't leave her sight. Polar goes to school with her, on vacation and everywhere Emma goes. They're inseparable and [he] gives Emma comfort.” State police said that the sweet card made Trooper Mather’s day.
West Virginia State Troopers of Princeton detachment play ‘Secret Santa’
“Usually, when I come up on somebody, it’s the worst moment of their day,” Trooper D.B. “David” Whited of the Princeton Detachment, West Virginia State Police said. “Not today.” Before he left on his patrol Thursday night, Sgt. A.P. Christian of the Princeton Detachment gave him four, crisp $100 bills to distribute at Secret Santa stops. Christian ordered
Whited to find people who he thought could really use $100. After about 90 minutes on the detail, Whited was conducting his fourth traffic stop on an older model green Saturn on Maple Acres Road at the entrance to the Maple View Church of Christ.As he approached the driver, Whited used proper police procedures. The exchange between Whited and Michelle Thompson was certainly not a bad exchange.“She was the nicest person I ever stopped,” Whited said. Thompson handed Whited her proof of insurance without him even asking. As he brought her license and vehicle registration back into his cruiser,he was excited by how nice Thompson was. He returned to the vehicle and handed Thompson her license and registration back. She immediately came up out of her seat. “I am truly blessed,” she said as her two children looked on in amazement. “Oh dear God! Thank you Jesus!” She threw her arms around Whited’s neck and hugged him for dear life. She said that her home was recently broken into. “This is for them,” she said, sobbing as she motioned toward her children with the $100 bill in her hand. “This is for my kids.” Whited took Christian’s orders seriously. He searched for people with children riding with them. He stopped a young lady traveling on Athens Road who pulled over in front of where the Vietnam War veterans are selling Christmas trees. “She had just picked up her little sister from day care and was bringing her back home,” Whited said after returning to his cruiser. When he walked back to the vehicle and handed Veandala Coleman the $100 bill. “That’s awesome!” she said. “I’ve never been on the other end of Christmas giving before.” Whited spotted a green Ford pickup truck with a gentleman and two young children in, so he initiated a pursuit. Aaron Summers had just picked up his son and daughter, Mackenzie and Aaron Summers Jr., from a party at school. Aaron Jr., told Trooper Whited that he enjoyed eating pineapple at the party. “I didn’t know why he was pulling me over,” Aaron Summers Sr., said. “I knew I wasn’t speeding.” And of the money? “Every little bit helps when you have two young ones,” Summers said. Leona McCoy was lost, so she pulled up beside Whited who was parked on Stafford Drive, rolled down her window and asked if the trooper could direct her to the old Armory. She had the directions to the Toys for Tots distribution location written on an envelope. Whited served with the Princeton Police Department, so he told McCoy he could lead her there. “She’s going to pick up toys from the Marine Corps League’s Toys For Tots,” Whited said. “I think she could use a little help.”After he got on Mercer Street, he motioned for McCoy to pass him. He followed her for about a half-block before putting his lights on. He approached her, asked to see her license and registration and said he thought her license plate was expired. He returned briefly to his cruiser, but soon returned to give her license, registration and a $100 bill. She emerged from her vehicle with tears streaming from her eyes, and hugged Whited. “It’s just hard to do, being a single mom,” she said. “Mom is trying to help. I love my little ones so much. Oh, my God. Thank you,” she said as she hugged Whited around the neck again. She offered the only thing she could in return. “Come to Applebees, and I’ll do my best to help you,” she said. Sgt. Christian explained that this is the second year that an anonymous donor had given the detachment some $100 bills for the troopers to distribute. Christian said that he didn’t want anyone to know his name. “We don’t even know if he’s from Mercer County,” Christian said. “He just wanted the troops to give people some help for the holidays.”
Louisiana State Troopers deliver gifts and food to New Orleans children
Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived in style with a motorcycle police escort to the Department of Pediatrics at Tulane University School of Medicine. With lights flashing and sirens blaring the duo was dropped off at the front door on Canal Street in New Orleans on Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2015. This is the tenth year that state police have generously sponsored the department's annual holiday party by providing gifts and refreshments to children in need.
FHP Trooper Buys Bus Ticket for Traveler Stranded in Miami
In the true holiday spirit, a Florida Highway Patrol trooper helped a stranded South Florida visitor get home by personally, and anonymously, paying for his bus ticket. The young man from Georgia was visiting South Florida the weekend of Dec. 6 when the trip went sour. The man said he was left stranded with no cell phone, no wallet and no help from family or friends. The man said he walked for hours through the streets of South Florida dragging his luggage. The man had little more than $20 to his name. He finally ended up at the Greyhound bus station, where he happened upon FHP Trooper Terence Hicks. "He told me that he only had $20 to his name, that his wallet was stolen. I took it upon my heart to assist him," Trooper Hicks said. The traveler explained his desperate situation and, without hesitation, Hicks reached into his wallet, and his heart, and gave the man $120 to purchase a bus ticket home. The man said Hicks would not give him his name, but told him that if the roles were reversed and he found himself stranded in Georgia, he would want someone to help him get back to Miami. The kind gesture would not remain anonymous for long, as the traveler penned a heartfelt letter and sent it to FHP. In it, he called Hicks a "true American hero" and a "great human being." "It bought me to tears because when the people I depended on the most let me down, God still made a way," the man wrote. "I have never met anyone in my 25 year lifetime that could Care so much about another human beings wellbeing enough that they would do that for me. "I just want to thank him for not only helping me home, but for changing my heart towards people, and making me believe in law enforcement," the man wrote. He concluded his letter with the words, "Thank you thank you thank you, to a true American hero........ From a grateful American!" By providing a detailed physical description of Hicks, along with his age and the exact date and time they'd encountered one another at the station, FHP was able to identify Hicks as the trooper behind the compassionate gesture. In a statement, FHP said that through his actions, Hicks displayed "one of the most important qualifies a police officer must have, compassion."
Maine Creates License Plate to Honor Wreaths Across America.
The Maine State Police are honoring Wreaths Across America with a special license plate this week. The plates feature the Wreaths Across America logo and the state police seal. Troopers are part of the convoy headed to Arlington National Cemetery and have been for the past several years, officials said. The plates were funded by the Maine State Trooper’s Association and the Maine Trooper’s Foundation. After the plates are taken down, the trooper who displayed the plate will sign it and it will be given to families who have lost a service member in combat, or it will be auctioned off to benefit Wreaths Across America, Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland said.
Playground equipment dedicated in honor of LSP Senior Trooper Steven Vincent
A dedication ceremony took place in the town of Iowa to honor slain Louisiana State Police Senior Trooper Steven Vincent. The playground he grew up playing on with his brothers has received new equipment dedicated in his memory.
The playground equipment is mostly blue and themed around police. Tracey Kincade, of Kincade Recreation-Miracle Recreation Equipment, Inc., brought the equipment and No Fault Industries resurfaced the playground in blue. “We wanted to keep it educational and something to remind kids of the good that our fellow police officers in all forces everywhere are doing, the good efforts, the community bonds that bind. Unfortunately, a tragic accident occurred but out of it came the knowing that we are all here in love and support and together united in the day to day. Steven would agree, and I know he’d be proud,” said Brad Bebee, Public Works Director for the City of Iowa, one of the men heavily involved in the effort.
“Had it not been for Tracey Kincade, the man who approached me with the idea, we wouldn’t be here in honor of Steven and seeing such an addition to our park. The fact that Keith Vincent, Chief of Police here in Iowa, and Steven’s brother, can look out his window and see this as a remembrance is just great,” said Bebee.
“This allows a way for his purpose in life to live on,” his mother said. “I brought the boys here when they were young and they truly had such good times on the merry-go-rounds. To be here today, in honor of Steven, in this very park, I know he’s happy and smiling and cherishing the good times awaiting so many youngsters from up above."
Kentucky is at it Again
Kentucky State Police’s annual Shop with a Trooper allowed more than 70 children to participate this year. It is the 13th year KSP has hosted this event.
It begins with a ride in a cruiser to Wal-Mart where they eat breakfast, take a picture with Santa, and then they begin to shop. They start with the winter necessities and afterwards head for the fun stuff. Each of the children got to spend $125.00 this year.
The funds raised for the event are through fundraisers and private donations. “It allots us the opportunity to take 75 to 80 children from our five-county coverage area Breathitt, Knott, Letcher, Leslie and Perry's counties. We're able to take this children shopping and try to add a little joy to their Christmas experience," Jody Sims, police intelligence officer for KSP Post 13, said.
The United Steel Workers Local Union in Williamson, West Virginia joined in the fun also. They presented a $250.00 donation check to Kentucky State Police’s Pikeville Post on behalf of all union employees of Trinity Healthcare.
KSP also began its Sixth Annual Food Drive for local communities throughout Kentucky Dec. 6. In 2014, KSP collected over 230,000 pounds of food for needy families.
"When we have things like shop with a trooper, cram the cruiser, trooper island those are opportunities, to first, take care of our children, give back to the communities and interact on a positive base it shows that we do care even though it doesn't always appear that way to let people know how much we do care about the people we serve in our communities and to have a positive impact on those people," Sims said.
Iowa's Second Oldest Living Trooper Called Back to Action
Sgt. Harold Norris (retired), the second oldest living state trooper in Iowa was called back to action Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015. He was on hand to show off the original 1935 Ford Tudor Patrol Car at the rededication ceremony.
The restored patrol car looks exactly like the standard-issue car, and a trooper was dressed in the uniform used in 1935 to match.
Students in the automotive program at Des Moines Central Campus did the remodeling work on the vehicle, and the group Keep Iowa Beautiful partnered with the patrol in rededicating it.
“It’s about symbolism; it represents the State Patrol. It represents the officers that are long gone, and troopers,” said Keep Iowa Beautiful executive director, Gerald Schnepf. “It represents the troopers that are retired. It represents the troopers that are out on the field right now. So, it’s a good symbol, and Iowans need to see that. They need to see that piece of history, and then it should stimulate some thinking in their minds about protection and safety. And what the troopers have done for them.”
The car will remain on display at the Iowa State Bank for the next 30 days. After that, it will travel the state to be displayed at various car and historical events.Sgt. Harold Norris and the Executive Director of Keep Iowa Beautiful were recognized for their assistance in the project.
Images featuring son of fallen Louisiana State Trooper take web by storm
Ethan Vincent, son of slain Louisiana State Police Senior Trooper Steven Vincent, touched everyone’s heart when he was photographed by April Reeves. The pictures tell such a powerful story of a boy that will forever have his father’s spirit with him.
April Reeves, the Lafayette photographer who snapped the shots, posted on her Facebook,"As promised, I wanted to share more images of Ethan with his father's hat and flag. I truly hope that when he is older, he is as happy to have these treasures as I was to capture them for him. This child is amazing, strong, and so very proud of his dad. There is something about the way he lit up when talking about his dad and the pride radiated from him when he placed that hat on his head."
Trooper Vincent was shot and killed during a traffic stop in late August, near Lake Charles. Kevin Daigle, the man accused of killing Vincent, is awaiting trial. Daigle is also charged in the death of a second man.
All Photos by April Reeves Photography Please contact photographer for permission to use
Connecticut Trooper and Baby Deer are Living in the Same Home
There are many calls in which troopers respond to vehicle crashes involving animals. Sometimes, sadly, left behind are orphans and volunteer rescuers must come get them.
Connecticut Trooper Ben Pagoni responded to such a call in which a doe was killed in a car crash. Upon arrival, he found she left behind two babies. In this case, there were no rescues present. Trooper Pagoni received permission to take custody of the deer and has been, with the help of his family, caring for them until a rescue becomes available.
“Sometimes Troopers get more than they bargain for when responding to a call,” State Police said.
ND Troopers Growing Mustaches for "No Shave November" in support of fellow SD Trooper
North Dakota Highway Patrol troopers are growing their mustaches to support South Dakota Tpr. Zachary Bader, calling it “No Shave November.”
“Everyone kind of gets a laugh out of it, most of the guys don't have a mustache, generally pretty clean shaven, so to see people walking around and kind of hiding their face, because they're kind of maybe a little bit embarrassed by it, but I think it's good. It has helped us really raise awareness," says Sgt. Steve Johnson.
He hopes the mustaches will help bring out a smile and raise awareness.
Bader suffered serious injuries after being assaulted during a traffic stop and was left for dead in October. He had extensive injuries to his head, including broken bones and was found bleeding and semi-conscious along the roadway. Bader was recently released from a Rapid City hospital and is recovering but has a long road ahead of him.
Troopers say funds are being raised to help with medical expenses. Some of it is coming from money patrolmen are saving by not shaving. So far the GoFundMeaccount set up by Bader's family has raised more than $61,000.
Four Washington state residents are charged in the assault that injured Bader. One of them has been charged with attempting to murder and to assaulting Bader; two others with being accessories to attempted murder and to the assault of a law enforcement officer. All four were charged with possessing more than a pound of pot with the intent to distribute it. Authorities say they recovered more than 50 pounds of marijuana, $33,000 in cash and a handgun after the incident.
NC State Highway Patrol Troopers Receive Awards
Colonel Bill Grey, commander of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, and Frank L. Perry, secretary of the Department of Public Safety, presented several members and citizens with awards in a ceremony November 17, 20105. The awards given included the State Highway Patrol Meritorious Service, Samaritan and Appreciation.
Meritorious Service Award:
The Highway Patrol Meritorious Service Award is given by the Patrol to a member or members who serve the state of North Carolina in an outstanding manner.
Trooper Joe D. Berrong, II – Troop F, District 9, Wilkesboro and Sgt. Benjamin P. Gates – Troop E, District 9, Salisbury for representing the State Highway Patrol in St. Louis, Missouri while competing in the 2015 North American Inspectors Challenge -- and they won.
Samaritan Service Awards:
The Highway Patrol Samaritan Award is an award bestowed to a member of the Patrol who went beyond the call of duty to aid or assist a fellow citizen.
Trooper Paul Howard, Jr. – Troop B, District 4 – Kenansville
Trooper Jeremy C. Freeman – Troop B, District 5 – Elizabethtown
Trooper David W. Emory – Troop I, District 3 – Greenville
Trooper Patrick E. Ellis – Troop E, District 5 – Mount Airy
Sgt. Benjamin P. Gates – Troop E, District 9 – Salisbury
Trooper Stephen S. Allred – Troop G, District 5 – Silva
Trooper Jordan E. Parton, Trooper Samuel D. Martin – Troop F, District 4 – Statesville
“The sacrifices displayed by the sworn and civilian members of the State Highway Patrol serve as outstanding examples of the unwavering service provided by state employees,” Perry said.
“The men and women honored here today have demonstrated exceptional dedication to the citizens of North Carolina,” said Colonel Grey. “I am proud to work with employees that display such a willingness to serve.”
Courtesy of North Carolina Department of Public Safety
Alabama State Troopers are Caught in the Act and Honored for Their Actions
Alabama State Troopers were honored Friday, Nov. 13, 2015 for going above and beyond the call of duty.
Troopers Justin O'Neal, Delvylon Williams, Richard Pittman and JT Morrow were honored by Governor Robert Bentley.
Trooper Justin O’Neal helped a homeless man he found walking along the interstate that hadn’t eaten in days. “I just felt with my heart that the man was hungry and needed something to eat so I stopped and bought him some McDonald's and took him as far as I could. Being a Christian and a good person that's just something that everybody needs to do. A lot of people think we're just out here to enforce laws and take people to jail; a lot of people have a bad eye toward law enforcement nowadays so anything that looks positive for us is always a good thing, it looks good for police officers in general, not all police officers are bad people, and we are generally good people that do this on a regular basis,” said Trooper Justin O’Neal.
Trooper Delvylon Williams bought meals for a homeless father and son. "I have two kids, and I wouldn't want anyone to do me like that, so I just went by and gave them something to eat. We do this every day, and today we just got recognized for it. We all do good things out there other than what you see, stuff happening in the media but this is the positive thing, and I'm glad to show the positive thing we all do as law enforcement agents across the country,” said Trooper Williams.
Trooper Richard Pittman and Capitol Patrol Trooper J.T. Morrow were also honored for helping a veteran.
It seems that Alabama state troopers live by their motto of "courtesy, service, protection,” everyday.