LOGAN, W.Va. — State Police Captain Dave Nelson was touched on his drive to work one cold morning in Logan County.
“I saw some kids at a bus stop waiting on a bus,” he said. “They were obviously cold and I guess that’s the way it came to be.”
Nelson is the commander of Troop 5 which handles State Police coverage of six counties of southern West Virginia. What ‘came to be’ was a drive by the State Troopers of Troop 5 to gather donated coats, boots, shoes, and other winter apparel of all sizes for children in the region.
“There is the need,” said Nelson. “We started reaching out to the schools to see if it would even be a good idea and teachers, principals, and counselors indicated some students were in need.”
The collection has been ongoing for several weeks and the articles of clothing will be distributed to the schools who have indicated the need. Although Nelson said the response from the public has been fantastic, it still won’t clothe everybody who needs it in winter gear.
“What’s sad is not everyone who needs a coat or a pair of boots is going to get them,” he said.
State Police will rely on school administrators to identify those who are in greatest need to be the first priority and work down from there until all of the donations are exhausted. Although Tuesday is the distribution day, Nelson said anybody who has gently used or new items can drop them off at any State Police detachment in the area and they’ll make sure they are given to a child who is cold.
“We’re trying to keep it as discreet as we can and allow these kids to enjoy getting a new coat and pair of boots,” he said. “It may be all they get for the Christmas season.”