Gobble Give Event 2014Click here to download the PDF: Gobble Give Event 2014

Read the article in the Sierra Vista Herald here


Operation Gobble Give

Courtesy of Quentin Mehr

The fall season of the year has often been associated with giving.  Halloween we associate with giving candy.  Thanksgiving we give thanks for the blessings we have received.  Christmas we give gifts to loved ones and friends.

It is during this time of year that those less fortunate feel the despondency of not being able to give as they would desire.  Some may not be able, for whatever reason may be, to provide for their families.  It is at times like these that those who can need to step forward and provide assistance.  Such was the case November 22 in Sierra Vista, AZ.

Captain Warren Simpson, District Nine Commander, wanted to do something for those in need in the Sierra Vista community.  He reached out to the Safeway Supermarket to see what could be done.  From that effort, Operation “Gobble Give” came into being. With the assistance of Safeway, Sat. Vincent De Paul Food Bank, banners provided by Southwest Distribution, a donation from the Arizona Highway Patrolman’s Association, and officers from the Highway Patrol Bureau, Criminal Investigations, and K9 unit, Operation “Gobble Give” went into action.

Captain Simpson said that he felt that the operation would be successful if they collected 30 to 40 turkeys.  This was echoed by Safeway store manager, Tony Llamas, who felt that they would probably receive 30 turkeys.  As the day progressed it became apparent that 30 to 40 turkeys was a low estimate.  In fact, posters advertising the thanksgiving operation were placed on the doors of Safeway on Friday.  By the end of Friday, 30 turkeys had been donated.

Saturday November 22 was a cold day in Sierra Vista, but that did not cool the spirit of giving in Sierra Vista.  Collection areas were set up outside and inside Safeway, for the collection of frozen turkeys, hams, nonperishable food items, or cash.  Officers Kameron Lee, Tim Wiedemann, Charles Galarneau, Brent Haymore, and Captain Warren Simpson manned these areas.  These officers were kept busy during the whole operation, receiving turkeys, money, and nonperishable food items.  The generosity of the residents of Sierra Vista was apparent. In the end, residents of Sierra Vista gave:

102 turkeys

4 hams

$712.75 in nonperishable food items

$1,583.75 cash

1 Turduchen

In addition to the above donations Safeway donated a $300.00 gift card.

All these items were given to St. Vincent De Paul’s Food Bank for distribution to people in need in the Sierra Vista area.

Officer Lee, in summing up the event said, “I was thrilled with the turnout and donations.   Sierra Vista is a very giving community”.  Officer Wiedermann echoed those sentiments, “I was overwhelmed by the support of the community.  In these uncertain economic times folks still donated to help those less fortunate”.  Office Galarneau, stated, “Having worked in this community for over 16 years it always amazes me how much this community gives back”.

Captain Simpson, after the end of the event, reflected, “The event was a tremendous success. We provided much needed assistance to the local food bank and had a lot of fun doing it”.

It is true!  The giving spirit is alive and well in Sierra Vista!

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