ASHLAND, Ky. (WOWK) — Tuesday morning, troopers with the Kentucky State Police visited children in hospitals across the Bluegrass state to hand out teddy bears.
Among the hospitals they visited were Norton’s Children’s Hospital in Louisville, Taylor Regional Hospital in Campbellsville, Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Lexington, and King’s Daughters Medical Center in Ashland.
“We’re glad to be here and glad to be helping out the community any way we can,” said KSP Trooper Bobby King. “We don’t know what the kids are going through at that time, but if we can get their mind away from it for five minutes, it’s well worth our time to do so.”
The “Trooper Teddy” program started as a way for troopers to provide stuffed animals to children during traumatic experiences. Now, the program has expanded, providing a sense of comfort as the children undergo treatment or visit their doctors.
“Each trooper has teddy bears and when we respond to a severe collision where a kid’s injured, or sex abuse complaints, child abuse complaints, the ‘Trooper Teddy’ is something that helps us do our job better,” said King.
Among the children receiving a “Trooper Teddy” on Tuesday was Julianna Hannon.
“I like it,” said Hannon, who isn’t sure what she’ll name the teddy bear. “Probably the police’s teddy bear. I don’t know what names for teddy bears are.
“If somebody is handing you a teddy bear, they’re generally not there to hurt you,” said King. “Your family gets you teddy bears, your friends get you teddy bears, and troopers will get you teddy bears.”
If you want to donate to the “Trooper Teddy” program, you can do so by making a tax deductible donation or by buying one of the teddy bears for $20 dollars. You can find more information here.