This week, the family of an Everest Metro Police detective killed in the line of duty will receive a special gift created by a 14-year-old Florida girl on a mission to honor fallen police officers.
Blue Line Bears is a nonprofit organization founded by Megan O’Grady, the daughter of a police officer. The company produces teddy bears created from the uniforms of police officers who are killed while on the job. The latest project: personalized bears in honor of Everest Metro Police Det. Jason Weiland, who died in a March 22 shooting spree that left four people dead.
Megan cuts, sews and stuffs the teddy bears and personalizes them with the officer’s last name and badge number. The officer’s department patch is also stitched onto the back of the bear before the bear is given a St. Michael medal and blessed by a priest. There is no cost to the family or the department for the bears.
“Last week was a little hectic getting caught up at school after our trip to New York and a huge English project, but we were able to finish 4 more bears,” O’Grady wrote in a Facebook post. “Tomorrow we will mail these and the ones finished last week to their forever families. We grow attached to each bear and its unique personality, and hope these families know the love put into each and every one.”
Blue Line Bears was founded to provide a lasting keepsake to help keep the officer’s memory alive and to help children of victims see that there are caring individuals who respect and appreciate men and women in uniform, according to the company’s information page.