Most of the political campaign signs have now disappeared from lawns and public areas. However, in their place, you may have noticed the blue and white lawns sign which have appeared throughout the township with the words, “Thank You Tredyffrin Police … We Honor You”.
Without a ‘sponsored by’ indication on the appreciation signs, it was unclear what organization or individual(s) was behind the signs. With a little investigation, I tracked down the background story and can report that the public display of support for our local police department began with the efforts of township resident Rich Sherwin and his wife Donna of Malvern.
I spoke with Rich Sherwin and he explained that the project started over his concern for the negative portrayal of police officers in the country. As a result, Sherwin wanted to show his appreciation for the local Tredyffrin Township Police Department. During a meeting with several Tredyffrin police officers, Sherwin thanked the officers for their service and asked if there was anything the department needed.
Citing township budget cuts and the elimination of two officers, Sherwin was told that the police department was somewhat shorthanded. Sherwin noted that the officers were not complaining and were supportive of the supervisor’s efforts in keeping the tax base low.
Sherwin learned of the following department needs from the Tredyffrin police officers:
- Drug sniffing dog (cost $10,000) – the police cited the increasing drug situation in the township
- Motorcycle (cost $25,000) – to help with monitoring the new township trails
- Video cams (cost $300/ea., 40 officers = total $12,000)
Following the meeting with the township police, Sherwin sent a letter to neighbors and friends, explaining the details (above) and the designation of November 14 – 23 as Tredyffrin Police Appreciation Week.
With the help of State Rep. Warren Kampf, a committee was formed and the Sherwin’s kicked off the program with a $1,000 donation. In hopes of funding a drug sniffing dog as the committee’s first donation to the police, Sherwin’s appeal letter to residents suggested a donation of homeowners of $100 – $1,000 with checks to be made to ‘Tredyffrin Township Police Activity Fund’. According to Sherwin, the fundraising efforts have raised over $11,000 to date and all checks have been turned over the Tredyffrin Township Police Department.
Beyond making a financial contribution or displaying the blue and white support police signs, there are other ways to show your support. The ‘True Blue Community Tree Lighting’ ceremony tree lighting ceremony is set for Saturday, November 14 at Malvern Federal Bank in Paoli to kick off the police appreciation week – all residents are invited to attend. See poster below for other ways to participate:
I attended the True Blue Community tree lighting tonight. Well attended by residents and police, State Rep Warren Kampf led the brief ceremony with a moment of silence for the Paris victims and their families. As the US and the world morns together over this latest senseless act of terrorism, there was something very moving to see the blue lights and the American flag tonight.
Thank you to the Tredyffrin Township police officers and first responders the world over … tonight our thoughts are with the victims and their families in Paris.