Brownwood’s Cross Country Healthcare Center hosted a Back the Blue ice cream party for local police and its own residents on Monday afternoon.   

Cross Country activities director Tessa Anderson and marketing director Wendie Nevels were joined by Brownwood police chief Terry Nichols, sergeant James Kidd and Early detective Brandon McMillan for an afternoon of ice cream sundaes and interaction. McMillan brought his German Shepherd K-9 companion, Jambo, to the home to say hello to the residents.   

Nichols said his department was honored and grateful for Cross Country’s support. He said it was important for the police to maintain a community outreach. “These are the people that we work for,” Nichols said. “It’s nice to see us outside of enforcement action. They’re not the folks that usually see us in enforcement action, but it’s nice for them that we’re out there looking out for them.   

“We’re representing the community, and I think it’s our job to get out as much as we can and be a part of the community,” he said.   

Nevels said she likewise wanted to involve the broader Brownwood community at Cross Country, especially since many Cross Country residents have limited mobility. “We always want to support our men and women who protect us every day,” Nevels said. “It’s very important.   

“A lot of times, [the residents] don’t get to go out and see people like the rest of us do, and go to community events. We try to take them, but they’re still members of the community and it’s good for them to get to act like they’re still part, because they are. This is their home,” she said.   

After Jambo made a lap around the Cross County lobby, greeting the residents, Nevels and Anderson scooped ice cream sundaes for the residents and the visiting police. Nichols and the other officers walked around, shaking hands and interacting with the tenants.   

A paper sign reading “Back the Blue” was affixed to the home’s front screen door.   

“It’s a very small token,” Nevels said of the gathering, “but we just wanted to say thank you.”