The Cure Starts Now

A&M University Police Department poses with chapter director of The Cure Starts Now Vicky Bridier (center). Bridier visited UPD to in early November to thank them and bring T-shirts for participants. 

A two-month-long journey is coming to a close on Jan. 2 as Brazos County law enforcement agencies wrap up their fundraising efforts for childhood cancer research.

On Nov. 1, the Texas A&M Police Department, Bryan Police Department, College Station Police Department and Brazos County Sheriff’s Office started raising money for The Cure Starts Now through the Beard It Up and Color for the Cure campaigns. Local agencies donated $50 for male officers to grow beards, $30 to grow a goatee and $30 for female officers to paint their nails. The local goal was $10,000, and as of Thursday, Beard It Up raised $11,064.74 and Color for the Cure raised $563.37. Police, fire, EMS agencies and the public are invited to donate.

UPD Lieutenant Bobby Richardson said Brazos County Law Enforcement Agencies were the first law enforcement agencies to join the campaign, and since then over 72 law enforcement agencies in six states have raised over $150,000. This surpasses the initial overall goal of $100,000.

“We were contacted by Vicky Bridier, Chapter Director of The Cure Starts Now,” Richardson said. “Vicky’s husband is a State Trooper and they lost their child to [a brain cancer called] DIPG at age 4. Vicky asked us if we would consider raising money for The Cure Starts Now and we all agreed. In the last two years, three Texas law enforcement families have lost their child to DIPG.”

At the end of November, A&M Transportation Services joined in by encouraging their employees to donate $7 per week and choose between wearing blue jeans, growing facial hair or wearing pink apparel. Transportation Services will donate their department’s contributions at the end of the campaign.

Richardson said the campaign is personal for many members of local agencies and he thinks that increased awareness can help everyone overall.

“We all know someone who has been affected by cancer,” Richardson said. “We just want to raise cancer awareness and raise money for cancer research. Many of the participating officers have lost loved ones to cancer. I think the more we can educate ourselves about the different cancers, the healthier we are.”

Megan Rodriguez is a communication senior and editor-in-chief for The Battalion.

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