CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Tuesday morning emergency responders, Cape Girardeau police officers, Scott County Sheriff's deputies and other men and women in uniform brought an early Christmas to about 100 kids.
The annual Shop with a Hero program has been going on for two decades.
"It takes a lot of people to do this," said Lt. Barry Hovis of the Cape Girardeau Police Department. "It's great for our officers to be able to reach out. We will be talking about it for weeks."
"Wal-Mart and the area departments and local donors work hard to raise money to make this possible," said Valerie Wondrick of Wal-Mart, who helps coordinate the program. "This year each kid will get to spend about $100 each. We are really excited about that. Basically we worked together to call the schools and the schools help us find the kids who may not otherwise have a nice Christmas."
"It's a blessing for our family," said Jerrie Morrow. Morrow is from Scott City. Two of her sons, Kaden and Andrew were able to shop. "A lot of these kids really need it. It's such an amazing thing to see them so happy. These men and women put their lives on the line every day for us and to see them really take time with the kids like this is heartwarming."
Many of the kids were shocked to learn they had so much money to spend.
"I got trucks and a bunch of Duck Dynasty stuff," said Andrew Rudd, Morrow's son.
"The kids that shopped with me were buying presents for their siblings," said Lt. Hovis. "When they do that you know they have spirit. We want to show them we are there friends and hopefully make them smile."
The program is made possible by public and private donors. On Tuesday, Dec. 10, Sikeston will hold their Shop with a Hero event. Meanwhile, the Jackson Police Toy Drive runs through December 6. Boxes for the Jackson drive are placed throughout the community.