They hit the mall before 6 a.m., were in Pennsylvania by noontime and shortly before 4 p.m. yesterday hit Virginia, where hundreds of police officers from New England traveled to bring good tidings to a young boy with cancer.
Five members of the Lexington Police Department joined the caravan down to Virginia, part of a good deed that grew into its own hashtag: #Cards4Nathan. Lt. Jim Barry and officers Aidan Evelyn, Hsien-Kai Hsu, Kristen French and Mike Barry, rented an SUV and made the trip on their own time and their own dime.
“It’s what we do,” said Jim Barry, one of the LPD members who often travel to funereal services for officers who die in the line of duty.
In total, a few hundred New England police officers gathered in a parking lot at the Burlington Mall in the early morning hours on Wednesday, Dec. 19. They shipped out around 6:30 a.m. on the 627-miles trek to Rustburg, Virginia, Nathan’s hometown.
According to Jim Barry, the caravan planned to roll into a hotel that evening and enjoy a buffet dinner. The plans were to meet Nathan Norman on Thursday morning at Liberty University, which offered up its campus after the #Cards4Nathan caravan grew beyond what the boy’s family could reasonably handle at its home.
Lexington contingent planned to give Nathan a card signed by the LPD force, a few presents, a breastplate from the Lexington Minute Men an a few offerings from the Lexington Fire Department.
“We have a soft spot for kids,” said Jim Barry.