Jackson church holds cookout for first responders

JACKSON, Tenn. — One church provided first responders with the chance to take a deep breath and enjoy some delicious food.

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The sweet summer sound of a cookout filled the air Thursday at West Jackson Baptist Church, as part of a special luncheon for first responders.

“A lot of our members are in law enforcement and are health professionals,” said West Jackson Baptist Church Member Carroll Griffin. “I was thinking about how much everyone else is going through, and I thought we ought to do something.”

Griffin came up with the idea after seeing many of his friends in these jobs experience stress.

He talked with Pastor Alan Teal, and they organized the event.

“It’s over 200. Between maybe 300 or 400. He said let’s do that. I told him I would pay for the food, but of course I didn’t know it was going to be this large!” Griffin said.

Employees of the sheriff’s office, police department, EMS and more all came to sit down and eat.

Church members made all the food and helped pray for protection and peace.

“One of the administrative assistants sent out an email that afternoon, and almost 50 ladies responded in two hours to make homemade desserts. So they’re making homemade desserts! I could not believe it,” Griffin said.

Most got their food to go, but made a point of thanking everyone who contributed. Though church members said the thanks goes to the responders.

“We’re just trying to say thank you to everybody, so we appreciate everybody doing this and we just say thank you to them,” Griffin said.

Each first responder got to choose between a hot dog or a burger.

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