Eric Lipp, Manager of the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program, recently shared this story with us of how Eddie's message is always reaching out to children around the country with the help of parents, educators and law enforcement officers. This time Eddie swooped down to the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Warren, Tennessee.
Partners in Safety
In August of 2010, Deputy Bobby Pennington, of the Warren County Sheriff’s Office in Tennessee, was attending the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) conference in Louisville, Kentucky. It was at this conference that Deputy Pennington, a SRO (school resource officer) for Warren County Schools, came across the Eddie Eagle GunSafe® Program booth. After speaking and visiting with Eddie Eagle Staff, Deputy Pennington went home with samples and brochures, and a phone number he made sure to call, to the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program.
Ever since that great discovery, Deputy Pennington and the Warren County Sheriff’s Department have been using the Eddie Eagle GunSafe program. They were and continue to be very lucky to have a proactive school system that immediately jumped on board and graciously opened their schedules to allow time for Eddie Eagle programs to be taught to their children. The program is taught in all 9 public schools in Warren County and 2 private schools. Last year, the Sheriff’s Office was able to teach the program to over 2,000 kids in the county!
The program has received tremendous reviews from students and parents. Deputy Pennington often runs into parents out in public, and is pleased to hear even the Mom’s and Dad’s repeating the safety message that their children took home with them. “It’s such a simple and catchy message…really easy for the kids to understand and the teachers and parents memorize it too!” said Deputy Pennington.
The department enhances their basic programs with the use of a borrowed Eddie Eagle mascot costume. Eddie Eagle makes appearances to excited crowds at the schools and really makes for a memorable experience. Deputy Pennington is currently working with the Tennessee Friends of NRA and the NRA Foundation to apply for a grant to purchase their department their own Eddie Eagle mascot costume.
The Tennessee Friends of NRA and NRA Foundation are huge supporters of the Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program as well as law enforcement and have continually funded materials and costumes for law enforcement in the state of Tennessee. We are confident that they will continue to do so in the future.
Learn more about Eddie Eagle's message on their website here.