Bossier teen raises funds to improve police officer safety, in honor of Sgt. Tim Prunty
HAUGHTON, LA (KSLA) -
Three years after Shreveport Police Officer Tim Prunty was fatally shot while in the line of duty, a Bossier teenager is dedicating her life in his honor to help increase the safety of police officers.
18-year-old Kellie Abbott family was close with Sgt. Prunty, who was randomly shot at Shreveport gas station on October 24, 2010. Christopher Cope was later arrested and sentenced to life for the crime.
"He was always there when you needed him," Abbott said describing Sgt. Prunty, "He was so funny! He always had an opinion about something, that had you laughing for days."
Abbott, a Haughton High School graduate and Mississippi State University freshman founded the organization called "Blue Forever" in Prunty's honor. Through T-shirt sales, the organization has been able to raise more than $19,000.00 to buy belt trauma kits for Shreveport, Bossier, and Haughton police officers.
The kits are equipped with gauze that stops bleeding and may buy some time for the wounded person before medical help arrives. Abbott first found out about the kits on a news report, "The second I heard about it I thought, that could have saved Tim," said Abbott.
"Blue Forever" began as a Haughton High School senior project. "I'm so glad they let me do it, it's been life changing," she said and explained that the community support for her project has been incredible.
It's one of the reasons why Abbott chose to take the project beyond high school to her university, with dreams of turning "Blue Forever" into a long lasting non-profit. "I saw it as something I could take on myself and make it better and bigger. Hopefully one day officers all over the United States will have quick clot combat gauze," Abbott said.
Abbott explained "Blue Forever" is now incorporated, the first step to making the organization a non-profit. Her efforts haven't gone un-noticed, Prudential Life Insurance has awarded Abbott with a Spirit of Community Award earlier this year, which included a scholarship and trip to Washington D.C.
If you are interested in buying a "Blue Forever" T-shirt click here.