Representatives from the Conarro Family Fund, DeFrees Family Memorial Fund, and local law enforcement gathered recently. Contributions from these two component funds of the Community Foundation of Warren County went into the K-9 Fund being administered by the Foundation for the benefit of the K-9 Officer Program.
The Conarro Family Fund and the DeFrees Family Memorial Fund each contributed $10,000 toward the recently established fund to support the K-9 Officer Program, matching the original $10,000 grant from the Foundation. “The K-9 Fund has grown significantly since it was established at the Community Foundation, including almost $1500 in online donations,” noted John Lasher, Executive Director. “We are pleased and proud to provide this opportunity for people to support the K-9 Officer Program.”
District Attorney Rob Greene commented, “The K-9 Officer is a resource for all of Warren County and the surrounding area. We are fortunate to have the Conewango Police Department as a location for this program. Officer Neiswonger is dedicated to the program and is now ready to start with a new partner after the tragic loss of Choper, our first K-9 Officer.”
Although the growth of the K-9 Fund has been impressive, the cost of maintaining a K-9 Officer program is significant. “Many of the items we need are donated, but there are ongoing costs to maintain the program,” Greene continued. “The outpouring of support from the community reminds us of the wonderful impact Choper had as a community service representative of law enforcement in Warren County. Everywhere he went he made friends. We hope that people will support this ongoing need for funds to operate the K-9 Officer Program.”
The expenses for the first few years of the K-9 Officer Program exceeded $35,000. Although the cost of obtaining a new K-9 Officer may be covered by a grant, the ongoing costs of the program include equipment and training.
Tax deductible donations to the K-9 Fund may be made by check payable to the Community Foundation of Warren County with K-9 Fund in the memo line, or online at CFOWC.org. For more information contact the Community Foundation through the website, e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 726-9553, or by visiting the office at 310 Second Avenue.
In photo, front left to right: John Lasher, Community Foundation Executive Director; Officer Scott Neiswonger, Conewango Township Police Department; Mary Conarro and Tim Conarro, Conarro Family Fund. In back: District Attorney Rob Greene; Susan Merritt, DeFrees Family Memorial Fund; Sheriff Ken Klakamp; Mike DelPrince and Stephanie Freitag, DeFrees Family Memorial Fund.