Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
Nadine Wimmer reporting In addition to the convoy of snowplows out this morning, police escorts lined streets in many communities. They were ushering kids to the annual Shop With A Cop program.
Santa was supposed to arrive by helicopter, but heavy snow and fog changed his grand entrance to a SWAT truck. But weather didn't delay kids and their police escorts from the task at hand.
You could find a heartwarming story on every aisle. Eighty-five kids were invited. We focused on a 12-year-old boy from Heber City.
Andrew Arnold said, "I want to find a Lego airplane."
Days after his 12th birthday, Andrew Arnold was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. So his family is relishing the chance to see him shop with a cop, in this case, his uncle, Officer Mike.
Andrew's mom, Teresa Arnold, said, "He could not wait for this day. And to see him shopping was awesome. It's been an awesome experience! It means so much to see him happy."
Organizers and Walmart employees look forward to this event each year for the joy it brings to children in need.
Mike Arnold, with the Heber City police department, said, "No one ever leaves unhappy or sad or discouraged. They all leave with such a happy face, and they're so grateful."
Walmart employee Kelly Giles said, "Just to see the smiles on their faces, that's all it takes."
The Arnold family doesn't know what to expect in the coming months, or even how many they'll have. But for now, the holiday season and the generosity of others has overshadowed those concerns.
Andrew's father, Dan Arnold, said, "When the sheriff's office called and said, ‘We want you to come and do this with us,' we were kind of like, "Are you sure there's nobody that needs this more than we do?' ‘cuz we really do feel like we've been just showered with kindness."
Area businesses usually donate enough money so each child gets to shop with $100.