By Jessica Bruha
The Norman Transcript
NORMAN — Norman police officers visited senior citizen residents Thursday at Rose Rock Villa, providing entertainment and donating Christmas gifts.
Officer Shawn Hawkins said it is the police department’s first year for the Silver Bells project, but they have been doing holiday projects for seven to 10 years with Center for Children and Families Inc.
“Normally, we adopt families,” Hawkins said. “This year, we split it between CCFI and Silver Bells.”
The department did a coat drive for CCFI, and police families and dispatchers knitted, crocheted and donated items for senior citizens at Rose Rock Villa, he said. Some of the gifts given to residents Thursday included lap blankets, gloves, hats and scarves.
“This is something that’s really important to our department every year,” said Kathy LaMar, police chief assistant, about annually donating gifts.
Hawkins said they made sure they had enough gifts for all 91 residents living at the facility.
While not all of the residents attended, the 50 or so who did enjoyed hot chocolate, cookies, officers singing Christmas carols and a visit from Santa.
“Well, I personally think it’s real neat. I mean most people don’t get this kinda party, you know?” resident Virginia Christenberry said. “For all the older people, I think this is just really, really neat.”
As Chief Keith Humphrey made sure everyone got hot cocoa and gifts, he told the residents the police department wanted to do something to help them celebrate the holiday.
“Merry Christmas everybody,” Humphrey said, as “thank you’s” from the residents echoed across the room.
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