DOUGHERTY CO., GA (WALB) - With thanksgiving less than a week away, folks everywhere are giving.
On Friday, elementary school students thanked public safety officials with a gift that stunned those leaders.
From students, to faculty, everyone at Lamar Reese School of the Arts had a message for first responders.
"We decided that hey, they don't get the recognition they deserve so why not let the Lamar Reese dragons show them how much we appreciate and love them," principal and one of the masterminds behind the event, Dr. Angela Shumate, said.
And a warm welcome they got as 100 members of nine local public safety departments marched into the decorated gym.
They enjoyed performances from both students and faculty members.
At the end some officers even got involved in the dancing.
Dougherty County Sheriff Kevin Sproul was left speechless.
"They told us that we were their heroes and it's just very touching," Sproul said.
He said as a difficult year for public safety officers nationally comes to an end, this was just what everyone needed.
"We see the ugly side. We see the blood and the gore and all that stuff and to come out and be refreshed like this to re-energize my batteries and the batteries of so many men and women here today is just greatly appreciated," Sproul said.
Albany Fire Chief Ron Rowe agreed.
"It's wonderful to be able to interact with them, see the energy, the excitement and the true appreciation coming from them," said Rowe.
In the goodness of giving the students didn't want the departments to leave empty handed.
They presented each department with a check for $200 raised by the community.
"We dream big and we think big and we were able to pull it off on this day so my heart is big," said Shumate. "My heart is happy."