ST. GEORGE — Several officers with the Washington City Police Department went above and beyond the call of duty by hanging Christmas lights on the home of two disabled brothers. But the Christmas spirit didn’t end there.

Washington City Police Officers are busy hanging Christmas lights on the home of two disabled brothers in Washington City, Utah, Dec. 4, 2023 | Photo courtesy of the Washington City Police Department, St. George News

Motorists driving by a single-family home on Summer Storm Lane in Washington City may have noticed several officers with the Washington City Police Department climbing ladders and hanging Christmas lights on Monday. The project launched after the Police Department became aware that two residents, brothers in their late 70s to early 80s, were unable to safely navigate the project on their own, Washington City Police Chief Jason Williams told St. George News.

The brothers have lived together in the home for many years and are long-time residents of Washington City, Williams said. This was the second year that Washington City officers have helped the pair with such a project during the holidays. Last year, the brothers reached out for help due to several health issues that prevented them from navigating the project on their own.

Once the department learned of the situation, Williams said, several of the officers sprang into action and responded to help out the pair. Those efforts left the brothers with their home adorned with lights.

When asked why the department would respond to such a need, Williams said, “When you think about it, the mission of policing is to serve the public, which also means helping our residents however we can.”

Community policing is not just about protecting the public, he said, it’s also about building positive relationships by investing in the community and helping those in need.

“Protecting the public is about establishing positive partnerships within the community,” he said. “And what better way to do that than to make sure these two brothers had Christmas lights on their home.”

Williams also mentioned an outreach gathering that was held last week, where the parking lot of Primrose Retirement Community on Washington Fields Road was lined with emergency vehicles.

But those units were not responding to an emergency call. They were gathered for a “First Responders Meet and Greet” that took place at 4 p.m. on Nov. 30 and included the Washington City Police Department, the Washington City Fire Department, Gold Cross Ambulance, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the Utah Highway Patrol and Utah Department of Transportation’s Incident Management Team.

Karyn Jensen, with Primrose, told St. George News the event — a first for the facility — was organized as a way to support the senior community living there and provide a festive environment for residents to meet those serving within the various agencies throughout Washington County.

The gathering also served as an outreach program designed to acquaint the residents with the many first responders, who “are the staple of our community,” Jensen said, adding that it also served to spread awareness about the presence of the older adult community living there.

Utah Department of Transportation’s Incident Management Team and the Utah Highway Patrol during a meet and greet activity at the Primrose Retirement Community in Washington City, Utah, Nov. 30, 2023 | Photo courtesy of Jason Williams, St. George News

More than a dozen police, fire and emergency medical vehicles lined the parking lot. Many of the vehicles activated their emergency lights during equipment and K-9 demonstrations that took place in the parking lot. For those in the area at the time, the spectacle would have been difficult to miss.

Additionally, residents were provided information about the resources and services that are available and how to gain access.

“All while everyone was enjoying a cup of hot chocolate, donuts and other goodies,” one of Primrose’s directors, Breelyn Milburn, told St. George News.

Overall, the event was about connection.

“The goal behind these fun outreach activities is to involve our local community and to support our residents,” Milburn added.

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