Sunday, July 10, 2005

Now That’s What I’m Talking About!

[In the 2nd grade I once made and manned a lemonade stand, but it didn’t do NEARLY as good as this!]

Here is a story I read on my home St. Louis news website that warmed my heart!

On July 5th, a St. Louis county police officer, Sgt. William McEntee, was shot to death while on duty. That is always such a sad sad thing. Men and women offering themselves in service for our country, whether patrolling the streets, rushing into burning buildings, or battling on the front lines at war, it is always such a sacrifice these individuals make for each of us. So thank you!

Well, apparently in the community where this officer was from, Kirkwood, some kids came up with the idea to have a lemonade stand and take donations for the family of the slain police sergeant. Here is a short article that was written early on Sat. morning:

The Kirkwood community is showing support for the family of slain police Sgt. William McEntee. A lemonade stand set up on the corner of Clay and Essex has raised nearly $19,000 over the last three days. That's just $1,200 dollars short of the goal. The money will go to Backstoppers, the organization that provides for the families of police officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty. One donor gave $2,000, while two others paid $500 each for a cup of lemonade.

Wow…and if that isn’t amazing enough, here in the updated news article from Saturday night it says the total is over $23,000!

(KMOV) -- Kirkwood police Sgt. William McEntee was laid to rest Saturday.
The funeral services brought a tremendous show of support for the officer, who was shot to death Tuesday night.

Hundreds of law enforcement officers helped make up a long procession as the hearse carrying the sergeant's body wound its way early Saturday afternoon through St. Louis County and to the cemetery.

In Kirkwood, where Sgt. McEntee served as a police officer for 19-years, residents came out in force, lining the streets to pay their respects to the fallen officer and his family.

At noon, it looked as if one block of Madison in Kirkwood was getting ready for a patriotic parade. There was a giant American flag, and the residents lined up at the curb in lawn chairs.

But in front of the Kirkwood Police Department, there was also the memorial to Sgt. William McEntee, a harbinger of what was to come.

There was a procession that would last 28 minutes, a hearse carrying the 43-year-old officer, and the 19 black balloons — one released for each year of McEntee's service to Kirkwood.

Kirkwood prides itself on retaining a small town sense of community, and that brought out tearful residents by the hundreds.

Many wanted their children to witness the event.

Sgt. McEntee was the first Kirkwood police officer killed in the line of duty in more than 100 years.

The funeral services began with a short service at the Kutis Funeral Home in Affton, followed by a funeral Mass.

Comrades paid tribute to Sgt. McEntee, calling him a leader and a man of honor.
Kirkwood police Chief Jack Plummer broke down when addressing the late officer's family.

Friends and comrades said Sgt. McEntee was, above all, a great dad.

McEntee leaves behind a wife and three children.

Kevin Johnson is now charged with first-degree murder, plus five other felony counts in Sgt. McEntee's death.

St. Louis prosecutors say the investigation is ongoing.

Johnson is being held without bail.

The 19-year-old was also wanted for probation violation, stemming from an assault charge.

He surrendered Friday night to a Northwoods police officer, ending a three day manhunt.

A neighborhood lemonade stand continues to raise a surprising amount of money for Sgt. McEntee's family.

The stand is at Clay and Essex in Kirkwood.

We were told Saturday that passers-by have now donated $23,000 at this small stand.
Those donations are coming in the form of small change, large bills, and in a few cases, checks. At least one of those checks was for $2,000.

That money will be going to "BackStoppers," a local group that offers support to the families of police officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty.

That’s all just SOOO cool! When asked, “Where is the Love?” I think we can say, “In Kirkwood!”

[Here is the link to the story and it has a link on it for the video of the kids running their lemonade stand and comments by some of the donators! It might require a subscription to the news website to view, I'm not sure. If you are subscribed to the DFW WFAA news website that subscription works too! Oh yeah, and it will play a quick commercial before it shows the video. Don't worry, the video is after that.]

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