By Melanie Petrucci, Senior Community Reporter
Shrewsbury – The weather outside was cold and damp with rain on the evening of Oct. 11 but inside Tavern in the Square in Lakeway Commons, it was cozy and warm. The mood was convivial as members of the Shrewsbury Police Department – Patrol Officers Union NEPBA Local 191 hosted The Pink Patch Event to benefit the 15-40 Connection, a local nonprofit whose mission is to promote awareness of early cancer detection.
Detective David Faucher of the Shrewsbury Police Department and resident of the Patrol Officers Union said that they started doing this for the first time this year. Special pink patches were created and are being sold to raise funds for breast cancer. The project has evolved to include all cancer awareness.
“We partnered with Tavern in the Square to sell the patches and anyone that buys a patch tonight will get a special edition Tavern in the Square glass and a Wicked Good Cookie that was created with our pink patch,” Faucher said.
There were several members of the police force and their families in attendance as well as State Representative Hannah Kane (R-Shrewsbury), Shrewsbury Selectman Beth Casavant and Jason Palitsch, chair of the Shrewsbury School Committee.
“We chose the local organization 15-40 because they are from the area, Central Massachusetts, and it goes to a great cause,” explained Faucher.
“15-40 is really excited and appreciative for all that the Shrewsbury Police are doing for us,” noted Helene Winn, director of education and outreach of 15-40 Connection. “They came to us and said that they wanted to do a Pink Patch fundraiser to support our organization and allow us to spread our early detection education and we are just really grateful that they thought of us.”
The Pink Patch Project began in California and has spread throughout the country. It is held each October in conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness month. Its intent is to generate discussion within participating communities and encourage awareness about the importance of early detection.
Faucher said that there has been great community support, particularly by Spectrum Enterprises who made special t-shirts for the department, and he acknowledged Wicked Good Cookies for their support. He also noted that the Auburn Police Department was very helpful in helping them get their project up and running.
Patches will be available for purchase at Police Headquarters, 106 Maple Ave., through the month of October.