El Dorado officer leads effort to help citizen in need

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EL DORADO, Kan. A call to report a water leak leaves an El Dorado man with new furniture, appliances and clothing, all thanks to the initiative of a police office in the community.

Since he was a child, El Dorado Police Officer Paul Sanders knew what he wanted to be when he grew up.

"We do this job to help in what little way we can," he says of fulfilling his dream to become a police officer.

Last Friday (Dec. 22), Sanders and his partner on patrol responded to a water leak call. That's where they met Gary. A pipe burst in Gary's kitchen. All of his belongings were soaked.

Sanders saw a man in need of help before Christmas and he wanted to do something.

"I wrote an email to the city and asked for any help that could possibly be given," Sanders says.

More than 20 people from the El Dorado Fire Department, public works and the police department stepped up.

"We were able to get an overwhelming turnout," Sanders says.

The assistance included gifts and necessity items like food and towels. Gary also received furniture and new appliances.

"He obviously could see that his old life had basically gone out the door and that a new life and a new start for him had come in," Sanders says.

Sanders canceled his own Christmas plans to help Gary, taking him shopping for new clothes.

"Time is something we can all afford," Sanders says.