Photo/Story Gallery 2002

Teddy Bears for Troopers

room full of bears trunk full of bearsThey are cute and cuddly, warm and fuzzy – and in times of trauma they are a sure way to bring a smile to the face of a frightened child.

Hoping to bring comfort to children involved in car crashes, domestic disputes and even traffic stops, Florida’s Turnpike employees, the Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce and Fox’s Designer Clothes collected over one thousand teddy bears to be given to children involved in traumatic situations along Florida’s Turnpike.

“Teddy bears help,” said Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Joe Fabiano. “Especially during a traffic stop. The parents are afraid and so are their kids. It shocks both of them.”

more bears backseat full of bearsThe bears have been distributed to the 110 Troopers who patrol Florida’s Turnpike. Each Trooper keeps three or four of them in his or her patrol car, and when they feel that a child may need to be comforted, they’ll distribute them.

Florida State Representative Irving Slosberg, D-Boca Raton, and member of the Florida House’s transportation committee, donated five teddy bears to the cause. Slosberg said the teddy- bear drive is a creative idea. “Although it’s not on purpose, most people don’t think about the little kids involved in car accidents. This is a great idea.”