|The raffle of a unique quilt featuring patches from sheriffs' offices in Missouri's 114 counties is being sponsored by the MSA Wives' Auxiliary with assistance from Southern Uniform. The proceeds will be used to purchase bulletproof vests and safety equipment for sheriffs and deputies whose offices can't afford to buy them. The quilt was created by Dianna Stockman, wife of Mercer County Sheriff Stephen Stockman, and her sister Sarah Bonnett.
Law enforcement officers face danger every time they put on their uniforms, holster their guns and go out on the street. The good news is, those officers have an extra layer of protection if they wear bulletproof vests. The bad news is, quality vests can be very expensive – for some, the cost can equal a half-month’s pay.
Currently, several dozen sheriffs and deputies around the state of Missouri don’t have vests – or the vests they have are old, outdated and don’t fit properly. The Missouri-based company, Southern Uniform is donating the first vest and has promised to sell the rest to the auxiliary at cost.
The names of those needing vests will be put into a separate drawing. The number of names to be randomly drawn depends strictly on the number of tickets sold.
Tickets are $10 each. The drawing for the quilt will be held October 8, 2016. The winner will be contacted by phone. The drawing for the vests will take place the same day. The names of the winner of the quilt raffle and the sheriffs’ offices that win vests will be posted online within five days of the drawing.
The creator of the quilt said she’s extremely pleased with how it’s being put to use.
“I’m so happy they’re (buying vests). We have to do what we can to help our law enforcement because they put their lives on the line for us every day. Any confrontation can turn into something bad,” Dianna Stockman said. “I know I wouldn’t want to do the job. I dispatched for the sheriff’s office for 18 years under the previous sheriff and that was close enough for me.”
To purchase tickets online, go here, or mail a check made out to "MSA Women's Auxilliary - Quilt raffle" to: Missouri Sheriffs Association, 6605 Business 50W, Jefferson City, MO 65109. Attn.: Jeanne Merritt.
For more information, call Merritt, MSA marketing director, at (573) 529-6900.
Statistics tell the story
More than 3,000 police officers' lives have been saved by body armor since the mid-1970s when the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) began testing and developing body armor and performance standards for ballistic and stab resistance.
According to the Police Executive Research Forum, officers that don’t routinely wear body armor risk fatal injury at a rate 14 times higher than officers who do.
The Bureau of Justice Statistics’ (BJS) show the risk of dying from a gunshot wound to the torso is 3.4 times higher for law enforcement officers who do not wear armor vests.