Christmas comes early in Darlington County; first responders hand out more than 1,500 toys

Pee Dee

DARLINGTON COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — Several Darlington County first responder agencies partnered with CSX railroad police to give out more than 1,500 toys Sunday afternoon.

“We’ve got several pallets of toys in,” Sheriff James Hudson said. “We have a lot and just want to make sure that every person who wants a toy gets a toy.”

Families had the chance to check out ambulances, firetrucks and squad cars, as well as meet representatives from the sheriff’s office, fire district, EMS and other agencies.

“We want to do something in this county to bring people closer together and show people that we still care about each other,” Hudson said. “We want to reach out and do everything we can to bring partnerships into Darlington County.”

The toys were collected by the charity First Responders Children’s Foundation and then given to CSX railroad police, who partnered with other agencies to distribute them.

“What the community really needs to know is that we are all here for them,” special agent Anna Dapson with CSX railroad police said. “As police officers, firefighters, EMS and dispatch, we do our job because we want to take care of them.”

The Darlington Raceway pace car even made an appearance at the event.

Gary white brought his granddaughter to take pictures with Santa and get a toy.

“She got a baby doll and a doctor’s kit and a toy truck, all kinds of really neat things,” White said. “Some of the folks that are coming out may not have as much as others and this is a great way for them to have a little more at Christmastime.”

Chief Carl Scott of the Lamar Police Department said being part of the event was rewarding and a great way to raise awareness about emergency services.

“It’s important to see the smiles on these kids’ faces,” Scott said. “We are trying to do something nice for them and at the same time show them who to come to if they need some help.”

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