GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - A group of senior citizens treated dozens of Gulfport police officers and support personnel to a free lunch on Wednesday.
Members of "Gray Power," a senior citizen's ministry of Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church on Thornton Avenue, prepared a home-made meal of chicken, peas, macaroni and cheese, potato salad, and assorted cakes. They wanted to thank the officers for protecting their community and to know people are praying for them.
"I'm almost speechless because of all the police officers that I see here, and all the people who are here showing their appreciation, and I'm just happy about it," said Associate Minister Rev. James DeFlanders.
"It feels really good, good that the community reached out and give back to us," said Brian Woods, a member of the Gulfport Police Department. "It was excellent, they did an awesome job."
Chief Leonard Papania says while other police departments across the country may be experiencing tough problems right now, his men and women are actually being embraced by the community. He says the only tough thing right now is his department having to stick to a diet.
It is the first time the church hosted an appreciation lunch to thank GPD.