North Idaho

Holiday And Heroes helping children in need

KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho - Officers and firefighters played Santa for dozens of kids in Kootenai County Sunday morning.

Holidays and Heroes is a program for children from families in need.

About 100 kids were taken shopping, including six-year-old Clarity. She led the way in the Stateline Walmart, with a Coeur d'Alene Police officer and sergeant not far behind.

Holiday Heroes helping children in need

It was hard to get the little girl to look for things she liked because she was so busy picking up gifts for her brothers, sisters and mother.

It's hard to tell who the heroes are,  the adults making sure the shopping carts are full or the children trying to make their families happy.

When I asked officers what it's like spending time with the kids they smile. Every time a child says "I want that toy" the officers get to say go for it. It's yours.

"With the community donating, we can do that, we don't have to worry about having to keep too much of a tally. They can basically have what they want," said Coeur d'Alene Police Office Brady Reed.

In some cases this is the difference between having a great holiday or even a having a holiday at all.

"My little girl today, she has an idea of what she wanted to spend for her brothers and sisters. I said no no no we are going to spend way more than that," said Rathdrum Police Chief Kevin Fuhr. 

At the same time, secret Santas were in the store shopping for surprise gifts for the kids.

Then all the children went to a holiday party where they were able to meet Santa, take food home to their families and of course the presents.

Law enforcement agencies and fire departments in Kootenai County and the Spokane County Sheriff's Office participated in Holidays and Heroes.