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Officers wish kids happy birthday

Chad Frey
cfrey@thekansan.com
Members of the Newton Police Department took a birthday party to the Mosequeda home this week, as they have done during COVID-19 restrictions that are starting to relax.

Officer Deanna Mowery serves as shift supervisor for the Newton Police Department, and supervises the school resource officers when school is in session.

School has not been in session for some time — while this is summer break, schools were shuttered in April by Gov. Laura Kelly in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19.

That, along with stay-at-home orders that are just now relaxing, have made things tough for kids on Mowery’s watch.

“This is a really crappy time for everyone,” Mowery said.

That is why she and her shift have been trying to make it to as many “drive-by birthdays“ as possible.

One of those was this week.

“Due to the COVID-19, my grandchildren have not gone out to public places. No birthday parties, gatherings with friends. No parks, no swimming,” said Gloria Arellano, of Newton.

Arellano is a member of the Law Enforcement Advisory Panel. She asked if Mowery’s shift could stop for a birthday visit.

“I think it’s good for our young girls to see that women can be strong, positive role models in our communities,” Arellano said. “Sgt. Mowery has organized positive projects for our community, Blue Christmas, helped organize fundraising events for fellow co-workers, heart to heart and Safehope. She participates in community events whenever possible. I think society should also be aware of the positive actions that these men and women do, on and off duty.”

For Mowery and her shift, they were just doing their jobs on that day — but wanting to send a message to a child.

“We want them to feel special, recognize them,” Mowery said. “We want them to be out there happy instead of just being stuck in the house.”