Richmond Police Bring Joy to Kids Celebrating Birthdays Amid Pandemic | True 802 | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Richmond Police Bring Joy to Kids Celebrating Birthdays Amid Pandemic 

click to enlarge Hudson Brown and Officer Ben Herrick - COURTESY OF MARIA BROWN
  • Courtesy Of Maria Brown
  • Hudson Brown and Officer Ben Herrick

It's a tough time to be a kid.

School's closed. So are playgrounds. Playdates are now a virtual affair. 

But members of the Richmond Police Department are trying to bring some joy to socially distanced youngsters. Last week, officers started a party patrol: Parents can contact the department and request a visit for a kid who's celebrating a birthday.

"As adults, we all understand what's going on and why we have to do what we have to do right now," said Officer Ben Herrick, who pitched his chief on the idea. "But for these little kids, who have been taken out of school, and they're not seeing their friends and extended family and neighbors, being told they can't have a birthday party is a pretty big impact." 

By Monday morning, the department had already completed or scheduled nearly 20 visits, according to Herrick. One of the first recipients was Hudson Brown, who turned 10 on April 7.

He was at home preparing to watch an educational show online when he heard sirens blaring. There in the driveway were two patrol cars and a fire truck, lights flashing. 

"It was awesome," said Hudson, who was completely surprised. "I was pretty sure they were coming to arrest me!"

Officer Herrick, donning an N95 respirator mask, handed Hudson a police evidence bag full of trinkets and mementos from the department, including a card signed by officers.

"They're putting themselves out there and coming to all of our homes, which they don't have to do," said Hudson's mom, Maria Brown. "This is a really great service they're doing, especially for the kids."

An appreciative Hudson said it wasn't the only nice gesture on his birthday. A friend drove over and put up a sign for him, a neighbor serenaded him, and he video-chatted with friends.

"I feel like things happened this year on his birthday that probably wouldn't have happened during a normal year," Maria said. "It was a special day, for sure."

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

About The Author

Sasha Goldstein

Sasha Goldstein

Sasha Goldstein is Seven Days' deputy news editor.


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2022 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation