It is that time of year to hit the stores and score some bargains, but for one little boy, who has endured some tough times, his shopping experience was extra special Thursday night. He was able to shop with a police officer in Crime Alert Berks County's "Shop with a Cop" program.
It was a joyous occasion at Boscov's North in Muhlenberg Township for children participating in the "Shop with a Cop" program. For Ian Hess, 9, it was extra special.
"I am really excited that I get to go to Boscov's," said Ian, a 4th grader at Brecknock Elementary School.
Ian lost his 29-year-old mother to cystic fibrosis two years ago. His aunt said Ian was always her little helper, there by her side when she was sick.
Since she passed, Ian has moved in with his aunt and started attending Brecknock Elementary. There, his teachers unanimously nominated him for the "Shop with a Cop" program.
"He is a very gracious child. And I think the word endearing pretty much sums up his personality," said Maryellen Kueny, Brecknock Elementary School principal.
So the shopping spree began. The kids participating in the "Shop with a Cop" program were able to pick up anything they wanted, up to $100, for their family and friends.
Ian's number one mission was finding a gift for each member of his family, and he accomplished that.
"It is a positive interaction with kids and I think they really need that especially kids that are here," said Sgt. Thomas Pinkasavage, Cumru Twp. Police Dept.
Twenty children participated in this year's "Shop with a Cop" program at Boscov's.