Dozens of law enforcement officers from multiple agencies were fed lunch Tuesday, thanked for their service and given the unmistakable message that they are appreciated in Brown County.
The lunch was a "love gift" from North Lake Community Church members, who served the officers lunches from Chipster’s Grill and deserts from the High Mesa Cowboy Church in the parking lot of the Law Enforcement Center, pastor Ron Keener said.
"Today we felt like it was an appropriate time to say that there’s a group that really appreciates law enforcement," North Lake Community Church," Keener said. "All we see, it seems, is negative, negative negative, and we want to be positive to the group here in Brown County.
"What you see in television is not an accurate picture of the love and appreciation that grass roots has for law enforcement. We’ve tried to make it into this big picture that they’re all bad. They’re not. We have so many good people who represent us and who sacrifice and serve in this community, and we needed to say that you all are winners, you’re champions, we believe in you and we appreciate you."
Kenner noted that Tuesday was the last day of June. "All this past month it’s been negative, negative, negative, negative, negative," Keener said. "We wanted to conclude the month by saying this is a positive time in Brown County, and North Lake appreciates you."
Brownwood Police Chief Ed Kading said law enforcement appreciates the show of support.
"We’re constantly reminded in Brownwood and Brown County that the community supports us, and we support the community," Kading said. "The food was great, and police aren’t going to turn down good food. It’s just really nice.
"The people are so kind to us here. It kind of reinvigorates us. We understand our responsibility and that we have to treat the community the same way as they treat us."
Sheriff Vance Hill also said law enforcement appreciates the support. "Anything we’ve ever done, the North Lake Community church has always been there for us and we do appreciate this," Hill said.
In May, the Brownwood and Early chambers of commerce teamed up to provide lunches in takeout containers to law enforcement officers at no charge.