Communities offering support to police officers in wake of Dallas tragedy

(WPRI/ Madeleine Wright)

CRANSTON, R.I. (WPRI) — Support has been growing across the country – not only for the Dallas Police Department – but for police officers nationwide.

News of kind gestures toward officers and their departments was widespread across social media on Friday – and here in Southern New England, people were also showing their support for the men and women in uniform.

At Cranston police headquarters, flags were flying at half-staff and officers were wearing black bands on their badges as a symbol of mourning. Five police officers were killed during an ambush in downtown Dallas on Thursday. The shooting rampage started during a Black Lives Matter protest – and nine people, including seven officers, were injured.

“Every night that I – any police officer – has to go out there and do their job, you take this job realizing it’s inherently dangerous,” said Sgt. Anthony McHugh of the Cranston Police Department.

(WPRI/ Madeleine Wright)
(WPRI/ Madeleine Wright)

McHugh said shortly after the shooting, a flower shop sent a beautiful arrangement to the police station, with a note reading: “Thank you for your service. We appreciate all that you do for our community.”

Sgt. McHugh said there were more good deeds, too.

“Whole Foods was kind enough to drop off some food earlier today,” he said. “Pizza, doughnuts, chips, drinks – it was very generous of each of those organizations,” he said.

Bishop Jeffery Williams from King’s Cathedral in Providence said he’s not surprised the community is responding.

“Many people are concerned about what’s happening in Dallas and other parts of the country as well, the shootings have occurred,” he said. “It’s on everyone’s mind.”

Williams said honesty is the key to bridging the racial divide.

“You cannot be reconciled until we begin to recognize that there’s some real deep issues here, there’s some real pain and legitimate concerns.”

While communities begin to heal, police officers around the country are being extremely careful.

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