MARYVILLE – A Blount County sporting goods shop is printing and selling t-shirts to raise $40,000 for the family of Fallen Maryville Police Officer Kenny Moats.
The owner of Pokey’s and Sports said people buying the shirts online and all over this great country of ours.
“Right now, they’re printing 650 shirts an hour,” Joanna Tinker said. “Saturday and today we’ve had to send someone up to Clinton to get shirts so we could start printing.”
Maryville resident Robert Bailey said Pokey’s and Sports has had shirt orders in Moncks Corner, S.C., which is more than 350 miles from Maryville.
Bailey said he was in the police explorer’s unit, and said Moats set an example he’ll never forget.
“When he spoke to the explorers, he didn’t talk down to us, Bailey said. “He made us feel like he cared about us, and to see us succeed in our future careers in law enforcement.”
Maryville firefighters also knew and loved Officer Moats.
“We worked a couple of wrecks together and he was just dedicated to his job, just very professional on wreck scenes and helping people in the community,” said Maryville Fire Department Capt. Mike Sing.
Vienna Coffee House has served as a meeting place for the Maryville community since October 2010.
Roastmaster John Clark said Officer Moats has been the focus of many conversations.
“It’ll take us weeks and weeks and months and months, but I think it’s healthy even when it’s not scheduled to come together and sort of mourn and grieve,” Clark said.
It’s a time where local businesses are pitching in to help Moats’ family.
“When something like this happens in our small town, it affects all of us, so anyway we can show support of love to the Moats family or the law enforcement community we want to do that,” said Melissa Webb with Dandy Lions Gifts.
Pokey’s and Sports said they’re expecting sales to continue to rise, and the money they’re raising goes directly to the family’s fund with CBBC Bank.