NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) – A Newport News woman spent her Christmas making sure Newport News police officers working on the holiday had dinner.
“We are real pleased to be able to give back to the community,” one volunteer said.
At Saint Augustine’s Episcopal in Newport News, Phyllis Mather and her volunteers were busy wrapping up Christmas dinner.
“We have macaroni and cheese over here with stuffing and we have green beans,” added another volunteer.
It is all made with extra love and care.
“It means a lot to me, because they’re like family,” Mather said.
Much like Santa’s elves, Mather’s holiday helpers delivered the meal to all three police precincts.
“I had over 19 volunteers this year helping to pull this whole thing off,” Mather added.
This is the second year Mather has fed officers. She got the idea after her son joined the Newport News police department.
“They miss holidays and birthdays,” Mather said. “It’s a thankless job. It really is.”
But today is a day to say thanks to men and women in blue.
“It’s amazing,” said Officer Zachary Howell. “It can be a little lonely at times when you are away from your family, but you know you are serving your community. There are a lot of people that do appreciate what we are doing out there.”
The appreciation is felt all the way around.
“I knew we were going to have food, but this type of food was unexpected,” Officer Scanarelle Lasoce added. “I expected pizza or somebody to bring cupcakes.”
It’s food for the soul and reason to be at work.
“I just told my partner I hope I don’t have to run after someone one today,” Howell laughed. “I’m going to be in bad shape. They’re going to get away from me today.”
Mather started planning in August for the dinner and relied on donations. Next year she plans to include the Newport News Sheriff’s Office.