Bowling Green FOP delivers Thanksgiving baskets to local families

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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- It's not your average food delivery. The Bowling Green, Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) packed up over 100 thanksgiving boxes to give to families in need in our area.

"I don't think she was expecting it she was very thankful. Thanked us several times," said Deputy Chris Troutman, Warren County Regional Jail.

For about 35 years, the FOP in Bowling Green hands out food baskets during the holiday season.

"When I took over we were doing 45 baskets for Christmas, now we're doing 100 for Thanksgiving and the same thing for Christmas, so our program has grown through the years," said Russell Mcelroy, Kentucky Trustee for Bowling Green's FOP Lodge and who took over this program several years ago.

The packing began Sunday night and into Monday, and this selfless initiative reminding others of a greater picture

"You never know what their day is or what their week's been like or what their life's been like," said Deputy Troutman.

The reason behind the the three decade tradition extends beyond just giving back.

"Sometimes it's not a good reason why they're there, but this time it is, so we're helping build those relationships with the community as well," said Mcelroy.

The recipients feeling the thanks in the thanksgiving holiday.

"It feels good to know that I've got somebody out there watching after me, and it just means a whole lot," said Verma Cowles, recipient of a food basket.

For the members of the FOP, this kind of response they say is the best part.

"It's hard to put into word, just how welcoming these families are when we come to their house," said Deputy Jerod Borden, Warren County Regional Jail. "They don't know us, we don't know them, but just the smile on their face makes it well worthwhile."

Monday was a change of pace from their normal routine.

"It's not everyday you get to help people," said Deputy Troutman.

However, here they might be wrong. Whether it's keeping us safe on the streets, bettering inmates or fighting for our country, it's the members of the FOP who actually do help every day.

"There's such good people out there and you guys are great, the greatest," said Cowles.

​Bowling Green High's ROTC program, the American Legion, the Housing Authority, Jail employees, local law enforcement agencies and others made this initiative possible.

"It's kinda a community effort to get this thing out the door," said Mcelroy.

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