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Lewis County children donate allowances for drug dog

Christy Howell-Hoots, The Ledger Independent

Donations for a city drug dog have come in from an unexpected source.

When Vanceburg Mayor Dane Blankenship put out a request for donations for the dog, he expected money to come from businesses or residents eager to help. What he did not expect, however, was a group of children to donate their savings.

Adam, Helen, Amelia, Katherine, Thomas, Patrick, Caroline and James are siblings who live in Lewis County. They had been saving their money to buy a swing set for their yard when they learned the city was trying to raise the money for a drug dog.

“They came in and put their money on the counter and said they wanted to donate their allowances to help us get a dog,” Blankenship said. “It wasn’t a situation where their parent said they should do it. These kids wanted to do this for the city. They don’t even live in the city. They live out in the county.”

According to Blankenship, the children donated $299.45. One of them had already donated money the week prior and returned with the other children.

“Their mom told me they had been saving to buy a swing set, but when they heard about the dog, they wanted to give the money for it instead.”

Blankenship said it warmed his heart to see the children donating their money.

“You expect donations from corporations and people, but I never dreamed that a group of children will come in and want to help,” he said. “They went above and beyond for us. I’m so impressed by these children. It’s a wonderful thing they did.”

The children also brought in handmade cards for the city. One of the cards said “I hope this money helps K-9 Elle keep people safe from drugs” and “I love dogs and I love police.”

“The cards were just heartwarming,” Blankenship said. “It was such a sweet gesture.”

The total cost for the dog and equipment is $17,000, according to Blankenship.

Blankenship had recently put out a letter to city residents with a plea for donations that will help toward the cost of the purchase.

According to the letter, the dog will be trained in drug detection, protection and search purposes. It will be coming from Bluegrass K-9 and Officer Tony Carrington will be the handler for the dog.

Blankenship said the dog is needed due to the ongoing drug problem in the community.

“This is one way that our community can send a clear message to all local and out of county drug dealers that we will not tolerate their illegal activities,” he said in the letter. “The magnitude and effects of the drug epidemic is far-reaching and knows no social or economic boundaries.”

Anyone interested in making a donation can contact the city office or the Vanceburg Police Department. Donations can also be dropped off at the city building at 189 Second Street in Vanceburg.

“No donation is too small and will be greatly appreciated,” Blankenship said.

The Ledger Independent is online at: http://maysville-online.com