Reporting Tim Williams
ROSEDALE, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland State Police rush the aisles of a Rosedale area Wal-Mart, but it’s not what you think. Dozens of troopers spent Saturday with children to “Shop With a Cop.”
Tim Williams shows us the holiday tradition spreads goodwill beyond the season.
Traffic was at a crawl thanks to troopers shutting down a lane, but this traffic jam was for a wonderful cause during the most wonderful time of the year.
“I got Bey Blades and a wireless router for my mom for the computer,” said shopper Elijah O’Banner.
For the fifth straight year, 50 children from the Essex/Dundalk area were identified by the school system as needing assistance for the holiday. They joined 51 troopers from across the state. Wal-Mart and private sources like the Optimist Club donate $100 per child. Many times, the troopers make up the difference.
“One hundred dollars, even at Wal-Mart, doesn’t go as far as it used to when you’re 10 years old and want electronics. So you’ll see the troopers here and there come up to me, throwing in an extra $20 or an extra $40,” said Shop With A Cop co-coordinator Lt. Mark McGuire.
With their uniformed personal shoppers, it’s a day for kids like siblings Julisa and Jesus to buy some of the things they’ve been wishing for during this holiday season.
Troopers say they get the real gift.
“Learned a lot about her and myself, as well, being that I don’t have any children. But it was a great experience,” said Trooper Dominique Rogers.
“He’s a great little guy. He told me he wants to be a police officer. He said, `I want to be just like you,’” said Tyreze Braxton.
After shopping, students at Eastern Tech High School served lunch and wrapped all the gifts.