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Officers man “Stuff The Truck” food, toy drive Saturday

The annual Stuff The Truck collection is scheduled for this Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. CST, at Walmart, Walgreen's, and Rite-Aid in Dunlap.  Photo contributed.

Dec. 4, 2017 – On Saturday, Dec. 9, officers from the Dunlap Police Department and the Sequatchie County Sheriff's Department will be taking up Christmas donations for needy families in the annual Stuff The Truck outreach.

Originally started as a project of the Dunlap Lions Club, Stuff the Truck became a labor of love for local peace officers four years ago. Officers that volunteer to man the collection sites do it on their own time, without pay.

Everything we collect goes to needy families in Sequatchie County,” Sequatchie County Detective Jason Harvey said recently. “It's just distributed here in Sequatchie County.”

On Christmas Eve, officers will load toys and gifts into Humvees, along with fruit baskets and a box containing all that is needed for a Christmas feast.

We take pretty much a whole meal to them,” Det. Jody Lockhart said.

Lions Club President Keith Cartwright said the club usually supplies over 500 local families with food and toys for Christmas.

I know it was close to 700 families last year,” he said.

In addition to Stuff The Truck, the Lions Club also takes donations through the annual Toy Run, a motorcycle ride from Cartwright to Dunlap that was held Saturday, Dec. 2.

Monetary donations are always welcome. American Legion Post 190 presented a check for $250 to the Lions Club recently, to help with the Christmas outreach.

Officers will be at three locations on Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. CST – Rite-Aid, Walgreen's, and Walmart. They will be accepting donations of new toys for children 3 and under, food, and cash.

The Sequatchie Valley Toy Run finished up Saturday at the Sequatchie County Rescue Squad.

Anyone not able to go to one of these locations on Saturday may drop their donation off at the Dunlap Police Department or the Sequatchie County Sheriff's Department anytime.  Anyone who would like to submit the name of a needy family may fill out a form at either department, so that family will not be forgotten.

Also accepting cash donations are: Keith Cartwright's office at the Sequatchie County Courthouse, Jakey Cooley at First Farmers & Commercial Bank, and Cecil Nunley at the Sequatchie County Rescue Squad.

American Legion Post 190 presents a check to the Dunlap Lions Club in support of the Christmas outreach.  L-r are:  (back row) Tommy Hickey, Post Commander Randy Tuttle, Lions Club President Keith Cartwright, Lions Club Secretary Jakey Cooley, (front) James Seals and Hugh Jordan.  Photo contributed.