The Utah County Sheriff’s Department received a welcome donation last week from a sandwich joint in Provo.
Firehouse Subs donated approximately $13,000 in body armor kits to the Sheriff’s Department on Friday morning at the Bulldog Blvd. restaurant.
“After the tragic events that happened back in January, we saw a serious need to help out the sheriff’s department,” said store owner Will Page, referring to the shooting of Sgt. Cory Wride and Deputy Greg Sherwood. Wride was fatally shot, and Sherwood survived a bullet to the head. “The sheriff’s department (called) me up and told me what they needed, and we made it possible for them to get their equipment.”
The donated armor, classified as “active shooter response kits,” are lightweight and require no special training to use. They are designed to help protect the first responders who arrive at dangerous situations.
Utah County Sheriff Jim Tracy was present to accept the donation and explain how the kits would be used.
“This type of equipment can be carried at all times in police cars and can be immediately strapped on by any officer,” Tracy said. “This kit is something that has been needed for a long time.”
Tracy described Provo as a high-risk area for gun violence, “with two universities, large families and a lot of elementary schools, (where) these types of shootings tend to take place.”
The restaurant raised the money through selling recycled pickle buckets, using counter-top donation canisters and allowing guests to “round up” their bills to the nearest dollar. All funds went to the nonprofit Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.
Firehouse Subs, a franchise restaurant, has given $10.1 million in 41 states and Puerto Rico, including more than $137,900 in Utah, according to a Sept. 15 press release.
“Firehouse Subs was founded by firemen, and this is a way to give back,” Page said.