Not just crime fighters

August 18, 2009 3:06:42 PM PDT
Houston Police Department officers and deputies hoped to brighten the day for young cancer patients and their families at Texas Children's Hospital on Tuesday afternoon.They may be crime fighters by day, but what they really enjoy is handing out toys and doling out smiles to kids.

"Just to make someone's day is always a good thing," Deputy Lennon Evans of the Harris County Sheriff's Department said. "In addition to being a police officer, we are caring individuals. Most of us have children ourselves. We just want them to know we're here for them, even in their sickness."

The program is called Cops Offering Pediatric Support (COPS), and five times a year, volunteers from a variety of local law enforcement agencies visit young patients, and parents are always grateful.

"It's very nice of them to take the time and give them bears," Dwayne Singletary said.

A live Batman is a big attraction, too.

"Every time they call upon me, I jump in my Batmobile and come here," the Caped Crusader said.

Patients especially enjoy the superhero.

"I like Batman," patient Jeremy Gibson said. "I like to watch his TV shows and movies."

Crime fighters of every kind are welcome.

"Iit's a bunch of agencies coming together, all for one purpose to bring someone joy that they don't have today," Deputy Tom Entwistle from the Harris County Precint 6 Constable's Office said.

It's all done for smiles that may be the best medicine of all.

HPD officer Enerdira Alejandro said, "I'm glad to make a difference in these kids' lives."

COPS was formed in 1986 and consists of officers and deputies from the HPD, the Harris County Sheriff's Office, the Houston Community College Police Department, Harris County Constable's Offices, the METRO Police Department, and other surrounding agencies. The stuffed animals were provided by donations from Wal-Mart, CVS, and other area merchants.

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