Wish Granted for Appleton Youth
The Appleton Police Department was honored to recently provide an opportunity for a young man from Appleton to live out his wish of becoming a police officer.
Jacob Frerking is a great young man. He recently turned 17, loves to watch “Cops” and NASCAR. He is also battling cancer. Due to his illness, Jacob and his family were connected to Make-A-Wish® Wisconsin. While he could have asked for a trip, requested to meet someone or to receive some kind of special item; he asked to be a police officer. We were excited with the challenge of making his wish come true.
Step one of creating an awesome day for Jacob was to contact agencies around the state. A simple request yielded hundreds of police patches, challenge coins and cards of encouragement, from law enforcement agencies throughout the state and country. Step two involved planning a day to cover Jacob’s desire of stopping a speeder and catching a “bad guy.” It took a community to make this happen. From businesses to community members, people accepted the challenge to give Officer Frerking a day he and his family would never forget. A thank you to these agencies, businesses and individuals hardly seems sufficient.
On Friday, September 9, 2016, the beautiful sunrise indicated it would indeed be a special day for everyone involved. Jacob arrived in his Appleton Police Department uniform, ready to work. He assisted the honor guard in a flag raising ceremony, was sworn in and attended roll call with officers. Officer Frerking received his assignments for the day; take care of a troublesome speeder and find a “bad guy” who had eluded officers. He handled both tasks in phenomenal fashion. Jacob booked his “bad guy” before trying his hand at simunitions training. He rode in our tactical vehicle to Lutz Park. The Outagamie County Sheriff’s Department took him for a ride on the Fox River in their rescue boat.
Jacob’s day continued with him testifying in Judge Gill’s courtroom. His “bad guy” received a stiff sentence and the community rejoiced. Judge Gill gave him a handcrafted gavel. Officer Frerking and his family had lunch with his department before he was escorted home. The procession was led by the Appleton Fire Department with Jacob riding home in his favorite squad car, a Dodge Charger, provided by the Grand Chute Police Department. Before he went in his house for a well-deserved rest, Jacob was thanked with thunderous applause from officers, deputies, fire fighters and support personnel.
Jacob was given badge number 9275 for his day. The badge number was significant as #75 is the number of his favorite NASCAR driver. In Jacob’s honor, the badge number has been retired.
While it was clearly Jacob’s day, it was a rewarding experience for everyone involved.
For additional information, contact Sgt. David Lund at (920) 832-5509.