Travis County Brown Santa is in its 35th year of providing assistance to underprivileged children and their families in Travis County and senior residents of local retirement centers in Travis County. If you are able to see this post, then you are able to volunteer some of your time. For some, the holidays are the best time of the year. Christmas movies, Christmas songs, and Christmas decorations everywhere. For those less fortunate, this time of year can be very depressing. I am fortunate enough to love this time of year, but that hasn’t always been the case. I have had years where we couldn’t afford a tree let alone presents. It is sad to see how many families feel that each year across our country. You can make a difference. Even if you can’t make a monetary donation, you can donate your time. There are families out there that will have a whole new outlook on the holidays if you donate just a little time. If you have never volunteered for something like this, you must do it. The feeling you get from helping others is inexplicable. I have been on both sides. Check out the Brown Santa volunteer page for more information.
We at Keel, Nassour & Heilman care about those in need especially during the holiday season. We are very fortunate to be where we are in life, but we haven’t forgotten where we came from. Contrary to some of those opinions, our officers here in Austin feel the same way. We implore everyone to give to Blue Santa and share with your friends and family. Having lived on government assistance and at times didn’t receive gifts at Christmas, I know how less fortunate families feel during the holidays. It hurts my heart to see children and families in need. Let’s break last year’s record for donations at the KokeFm breakfast.
JD Reyes lost his battle to Cancer yesterday. I have never actually met JD in person, but I followed his journey through his father Ely. This family along with many other families have been through hell and back. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemies. JD and his family were so much stronger than I could have been through the entire fight. JD had a bucket list that I fear he did not get to complete. He tried so hard to beat this thing with a positive attitude and a smile. JD brought a lot of people together in his short life on earth. I will never forget how he touched my heart.
He posted the below status on his Facebook on September 28th.
“Well the cancer I have has continued to spread and get more aggressive. It’s in my lungs, liver, pancreas, stomach, lymph nodes, kidneys. So and it’s growing fast so I might die soon. Just want everyone to know I love y’all soooooo much and thank y’all for supporting me to the end.”
I wish I would not have been deactivated for the past few months, so I could have offered some encouragement like so many others. Now that I am a day late, I want to offer this to you JD. Watch over your family. You are now their guardian angel. I hope that when the time comes, I am half as brave as you. You continue to be an inspiration. You have a lot of friends here on earth that will forever be #TeamJay.
There has been something of a national conversation about police officers in recent months, spawning movements such as Black Lives Matter and Blue Lives Matter.
No matter where you stand on those issues, it is worth remembering that the vast majority of police officers are good people who are just trying to make their communities safer.
Some cops even go above and beyond, committing acts of kindness and generosity that prove they are a credit to the badge. One such cop is Houston officer Sgt. Steve Wick.
The homeless man is named Quintus and is 75 years old. He suffers from extreme glaucoma and his feet were in terrible shape, due to years of living on the streets. Sgt. Wick is a 23-year veteran of the Houston Police Department. He humbly spoke to ABC about the encounter. “We cleaned him up and gave him new clothes,” he said. “We tried to get his feet in shape so he could put shoes on. His vision deteriorated to a point where he couldn’t function as well anymore.”
Sgt. Wick and his partner, senior police officer Colin Mansfield, took Quintus to buy clothing and helped him shower: “Quintus, he was happy to get cleaned up,” he said. “His whole life he’s been minimally employed, selling the Sunday paper. He’s got glaucoma, so he’s about 95 percent blind. When we found him, he was having difficulty walking to a thrift shop to pick up new clothes.” The officer was just happy to help.
However, he also wanted to prove to the community that cops regularly act as a force for good: “Police have gotten an black eye in recent years, or months. It makes people feel like police officers are out there to help, rather than to hurt, and we are.” The duo took Quintus to an emergency shelter and helped him get set up with eye doctor visits and other social services.
Here’s a big a thank you to Sgt. Wick and other First Responders like him what they do unseen everyday to help our community.