City of Stone Mountain Police and Staff Decide to Spread Christmas Cheer to Community Children
For Christmas this year, City of Stone Mountain Police Officer Ranetta Cruse suggested to HR that the City’s employees be given an opportunity to provide gifts to the town’s children. HR representative, Assistant City Clerk Alicia Daniels, presented the proposal to Stone Mountain City Manager ChaQuias Thornton and the opportunity was announced at the annual Employee Christmas Luncheon. City employees were delighted to participate and Council Members and the Stone Mountain Women’s Club even donated gifts to the cause. Officer Cruse canvassed two area subdivisions and gathered the names and Christmas wishes of several children. The children’s names, ages, and a Christmas wish was placed on Christmas tags and employees of the City, and others, picked the tags that hang on the Christmas tree in the lobby at City Hall.
Toys were collected for a period of almost two weeks, and Officer Cruse and Mrs. Daniels – with help from Visitor Center Manager Kim Cumbie and Administration personnel – worked to sort and label gifts and to stuff the toys into bags. During the afternoon of Saturday, December 22, 2018, Officer Cruse, Sgt. James Westerfield, and City Manager Thornton delivered bags of toys and gift cards to over 30 area boys and girls, brightening the faces of little ones ranging in age from 2 years to 14 years old. Officer Cruse was captured several times during the toy delivery saying, “I just love the kids” as she hugged and greeted the children and many of their parents. “This is what public service is all about...giving of ourselves to better the community in which we serve, in any manner possible”, says City Manager Thornton. “Seeing the delight with which the employees brought their gifts to the collection area and watching the joy in the children’s faces as they were given their gifts, filled my heart and made me proud to serve in this great community along beside some of the best staff ever. This endeavor has made Christmas a little merrier for some of the youngest members of our community and we are grateful for all of those who participated in making it a success. As for Officer Cruse, her concern for the youth of the community is a prime example of what Community Policing is all about. Following the lead set by Officer Cruse, the Council, the City staff, and other community members have all expressed an interest in seeing this event become an annual and growing tradition here in the Village”.