In 2014, after the tragic loss of both Sacramento County Deputy Danny Oliver and Placer County Detective Mike Davis Jr., the End of Watch Fund wanted to do something to support the thousands of law enforcement employees attending their funeral services. This is how the Snack Bag Project began.
The End of Watch Fund solicited donations and volunteers, and packaged 3,000 snack bags for Deputy Oliver and Deputy Davis’ services. During the service, our volunteers placed snack bags and bottled waters on each patrol car in the parking lot.
What many people do not see, is an officer grieving for the loss of one of their own. When the day of the funeral service arrives, that officer is usually up long before the sun rises. Class A uniforms are pressed and boots are shined. With a heavy heart, the officer escorts their fallen brother or sister to the funeral service in a procession of marked units.
Law enforcement funeral services generally last two hours or more. After the service, that officer will follow their fallen to their burial site, and remain at attention during that time as well. Attending officers usually spend over 10 hours at a law enforcement funeral, with water and sustenance being a complete after thought. By placing a snack bag and bottled water on that officer’s vehicle, he or she will at least have something to tide them over through the emotionally exhausting day of burying one of their own.
“I wanted to take a moment and express my gratitude to your program, and all your volunteers. Line of Duty Death funerals are hard on everyone, and for the past several funeral escort details I have been involved with – EOW has been present and provided genuine heartfelt support.
Today, I had the opportunity to observe your staff and volunteers moving through the area while placing snack bags and water near the vehicles of attendees. While I have appreciated the gift and gesture during past funerals, today was somewhat different. The level of genuine care and respect displayed by everyone from EOW could not be overlooked. People care, but sometimes law enforcement has a difficult time seeing that. The young people out working with you on a cold, early morning – many of them kids – showing so much care for all the attendees, was the good feeling that helped me get through a touch day.
Please pass along that what you do does make a difference. And we honestly appreciate organizations such as yours. We see you. You have our back, and we have yours.” – California Law Enforcement Officer
“I want to personally thank you for the amazing thoughtfulness your organization showed to the officers and families who attended the services. Returning to the patrol car for the procession we didn’t realize how hungry we were until we saw the snack bag and bottled waters. Please know the thoughtfulness once again brought tears to my eyes but not tears of sadness – they were tears of gratitude.” – Wife of California Highway Patrol Sergeant
Between 2014 and 2017, the End of Watch Fund has distributed over 26,000 snack bags and bottled waters at the funeral services of law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty. We make every effort to provide this support service at every LODD funeral service within a 4-hour driving distance from Elk Grove.
We sincerely thank everyone who donates and volunteers for the Snack Bag Project.
Snack bags generally cost $1 each to assemble. If you would like to sponsor a snack bag, please click HERE.
If you would like to sign up as a volunteer with the End of Watch Fund, please click HERE.
The End of Watch Fund would like to extend special thanks to Southwest Airlines for their continuing donations of provisions that are included in the snack bags.
We try to include as many notes of encouragement and support in the snack bags that we can. We have received tremendous feedback from doing this, as it really brightens the receiving officer’s day during such a time of sadness.
“Today was a day of mixed emotions. I was honored to go to Deputy French’s memorial service and stand amongst many heroes to honor his life. While it was an incredibly difficult time, when I returned to my vehicle I found this lovely note from Esther. It’s amazing how such a small gesture can mean so much. The time taken to draw a picture for someone she doesn’t even know, made a gloomy day extremely bright…Thank you Esther from the bottom of my heart. You are my hero.” – San Mateo County Sheriff’s Deputy
We are always accepting notes, which can be mailed or dropped off at:
Elk Grove Police Department
Attn: End of Watch Fund
8400 Laguna Palms Way
Elk Grove, CA 95758