A small group of people tied blue ribbons to street signs and poles Thursday morning along Burlington Avenue to show support for local law enforcement agencies.
Two service dog owners and a few clients at Goodwill Developmental Disabilities Services met at the Hastings Police Department and started putting up ribbons there.
Dave Davis of Grand Island and his service dog, Dakota, started putting up the blue ribbons to show support in Grand Island after recent hostilities against law enforcement in other areas of the country. Dakota is a 8-year-old sheltie who helps Davis with daily tasks like dressing and retrieving items.
“Our goal is just to show community support,” Davis said.
Sheena McPeek of Hastings, her children and her service dog, Fonzy, brought cookies for the officers. Fonzy is a 9-year-old Bernese mountain dog who helps McPeek during seizure episodes.
McPeek said she wanted to show her children, Laynden McPeek, 9, and Michael Sorensen, 6, that officers are protectors in the community and there isn’t a reason to fear them.
“We do appreciate their work,” she said. “It’s our way of giving back to them.
Davis said the group planned to put ribbons up along much of Burlington Avenue, especially around the police station, as well as around the Adams County Courthouse, which houses the Adams County Sheriff’s Office.
Davis is a retired veteran and knows that many law enforcement officers are former or current military veterans.
“They already served our country once and they are now serving it again,” he said.
Sgt. Mark Hinrichs said officers enjoy visits from people in the community, especially children since it provides an opportunity to interact with them in a more relaxed setting. Often, officers are required to meet children after an incident and the children are already afraid.
“It gives them a chance to see the kids in a good situation, a more relaxed situation,” he said.
Officers appreciate knowing there are people in the community there to support them as they protect and serve.
“They like to know there’s support from the community,” Hinrichs said.