KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Knox County Sheriff’s Office has received a new tool to help comfort children: teddy bears.
Trucking company Fraley and Schilling gave the bears to KCSO as a part of their Care Bear Patrol Program. The idea is that a deputy can give a child in distress the bear and on the bear is a card where the child can give their bear a name.
The program began in 2016 after drivers with Fraley and Schilling saw children being impacted by accidents on the road and want to help. They started by giving bears to the Tennessee Highway Patrol, and the program has since expanded to include other law enforcement departments.
“These bears are presented to deputies out on the road to help comfort children,” said Peter Holmes, safety manager with Fraley and Schilling. “Children that are found in distress whether it’s an accident or a domestic situation. So our concern and our care as a company is our kids.
“That’s our future. It’s a program that’s to reach out to our Sheriff’s Department and our community showing; we here at Fraley and Schilling, we care.”
“It means a lot,” Sheriff Tom Spangler said. “It really touches your heart and to see a child who has been in a traumatic incident whatever it may be and then to smile when you hand something like that and then they take it and hold it close to them. It means an awful lot to us, it really does.”
Spangler went on to say the department plan to give the bears to deputies as soon as possible.