Area police departments help quarantined children celebrate birthdays

Police departments across Lamar County are sounding their sirens for children celebrating their birthdays in quarantine.

Since the Paris Police Department first issued the call for any birthday appointments, it has done more than 30 drive-bys with Lamar County Sheriff’s Office, Reno Police Department and Bonham Police Department joining in on the fun.

The celebrations started with the Paris Police Department asking any parents who wanted this service for their children to call either Officer Curtis Graham or Chief Bob Hundley.

“We will drive a patrol call by your house, light it up with a few siren bumps and do a happy birthday over the PA,” a post on Facebook stated.

This was started in an effort to make young children feel special on their birthdays, even while in quarantine.

“We’d really like to make these stary at home birthdays a little more special,” the post stated.

“I had received a call from the Chief Hundley and wanted to do that for the kids,” Reno Police Chief Jeremy Massey said. “We love seeing the kids’ faces. It brings some joy to those stuck at home.”

His department is leaving curbside gift bags for the children containing fun activities such as coloring books and jump ropes after the sirens have rung to keep in line with social distancing protocol.

Currently, there is no specific cut-off date to end the celebrations due to uncertainty as to when quarantine will end.

“The pandemic is dynamic and it changes day to day,” Massey said.

The continuation of these services after the pandemic has passed is undecided.

“We haven’t discussed it yet, but we might. It’s a lot of fun for the officers and for the kids,” Massey said.

Each department is offering these special calls within their jurisdictions. For information on how to schedule a call, visit their Facebook pages.

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