Florida boy on mission to thank every police officer in America
A 9-year-old Florida boy, with help from family and friends, made a special delivery July 13 to officers at the Upper Macungie Township Police Department and troopers with State Police Troop M, Fogelsville.
Tyler Carach of Bratt, Fla., dressed in a cape with doughnut designs decorating it, delivered some 12 boxes of doughnuts to the officers and troopers to thank them for their service to the community.
Tyler’s business card, which he hands out to police, along with their doughnuts, states “I DONUT need a reason to thank a cop.”
When Tyler was 8, he and his mother stopped at Gilleys, a store in Florida, on Aug. 1, 2016.
There he saw four sheriff’s deputies.
“I asked my mother if I could buy them mini doughnuts with my own money, so I did,” he said. “When I left there, I said I wanted to thank every cop in America.”
Tyler and his mother Sheena, brother, Zach, and sister, Naudia, are three weeks into a six-week journey up the East Coast from Florida to New Hampshire thanking police officers and handing out doughnuts.
Tyler told Upper Macungie Police Lt. Pete Nickischer his favorite doughnuts are blueberry and raspberry drizzle, both with sprinkles.
Sheena spoke with The Press at the event about her son’s mission.
“After he bought those four deputies doughnuts and we left Gilley’s, he asked me why the cops were so excited and happy over the doughnuts,” Sheena said. “I explained to him a lot of people in today’s world choose to judge a whole by a few and if you did that you wouldn’t have anybody because we all know there are bad doctors, lawyers and teachers but we can’t judge all those groups by just that few.
“I also told him police officers have been under attack and been having a really hard time with negativity from people they serve. He told me he was going to thank every cop in America and buy them all doughnuts.”
Sheena said Tyler earns money to buy doughnuts by doing chores for her and his grandparents.
“We have a barn. He sweeps it and helps wash the vehicles, just anything we can really think of,” she said. “It is important to us when he wants to do something or buy something he has to earn it, that it just isn’t going to be handed to him.”
“It is really important to keep that instilled in him, that he has to earn what he wants to do,”
Sheena said although Tyler can’t earn enough money to buy all the doughnuts, they have been very blessed.
“We have had a lot of sponsorships along the way from different doughnut shops like Krispy Kreme, Dunkin’ Donuts, Bill’s Donuts in Ohio, and Busy Jean’s Donuts in Oregon, who have stepped up and, of course, Mary Ann’s Donuts in Allentown.”
Sheena said they reach out to local doughnut shops in areas they visit.
“It just depends what is there, where we can get the donuts, who is willing to help or who is willing to discount them for us to be able to buy them at a better rate,” Sheena stated.
She said several local bakeries including The Bakery Nook, Egypt Star Bakery and Dunkin’ Donuts, have gotten behind Tyler and love what he is doing and think it is amazing, so they donated all the doughnuts for the events at the State Police Belfast Barracks, Slate Belt Regional, Easton, Palmer, Forks, Nazareth, Bangor with East Bangor and Roseto and Portland police departments.
Sheena said the next stop on their journey is 1 Police Plaza, Brooklyn, Manhattan North, Staten Island, and the police academy in New York City handing out 1,000 doughnuts a day to 42,000 officers.
When Tyler was on the Steve Harvey Show, he met Bethany Kuster from Pen Argyl, Northampton County, and the two families became friends.
Kuster, according to her website, Color for Kids, started collecting art supplies to send to children after she became upset when she discovered not all youngsters have their own box of crayons.
Her mission is to promote individual expression and creativity through coloring by children in high poverty schools, enrolled in grades pre-K through fourth grade, by providing art supplies.
“It is because of them we picked Pennsylvania,” Sheena said. “When we asked Rachel, Bethany’s mother, what was around her, she knew Upper Macungie Township Deputy Police Chief Joe Wilson, so that is why we started here.
“We originally started this trip with 30 scheduled events, some of those included multiple departments.
“But we have actually added to our trip 10 more events than what we started with, so we will probably cover 70-plus departments along our six-week trip, if not more than that.
“In addition to visiting police departments in Pennsylvania and Ohio, we have visited departments in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, Oregon, Illinois, North Carolina and Tennessee,” Sheena said.
They started their six-week trip by already giving out 6,000 doughnuts.
“The goal was to give out over 10,000 doughnuts, which we are going to well exceed,” Sheena stated. “By the end of this trip, he will end his first year with 17,000-18,000 doughnuts delivered, if not more.”
Tyler, who wants to be a K-9 police officer when he is older, will be homeschooled, so he can visit more cops, Sheena said.
“We are kind of devoting his whole year to police,” she stated.
Upper Macungie Township Police Lt. Peter Nickischer commented on how Tyler’s visit went.
“It went extremely well,” Lt. Nickischer said in an email. “In fact, the following day, I had several officers approach me and comment about how nice the visit was and how much they enjoyed it.
“I think that’s wonderful and it would make Tyler very happy to know. We had a great visit.
“Tyler, his mom, and the entire crew that came to visit were very nice and supportive. They’re good people.
“I also think it’s great that our friends from next door, the Pennsylvania State Police, came over and spent time with Tyler as well. I wanted to make his visit special and they helped me accomplish that.”