Animal Control Officers Jackie Corbiere and Wayne Cunningham are no strangers to residents around the City of Hutto. Whether it’s fishing a small kitten out of a storm sewer in the middle of the night, or borrowing a kayak to fish a small dog from Brushy Creek, or reassuring an owner after a pet escapes, these “pawsome” Hutto employees are always ready to go above and beyond for both the human and animal residents of the City.
At times, though, both Corbiere and Cunningham feel moved to go above and beyond the call of duty.
In July, Corbiere and Cunningham responded to an animal welfare check at a local home, and found more than just kitties in need of help. The resident, a woman in her 70s, had recently spent time in the hospital undergoing the latest in several rounds of chemotherapy to treat a rare form of cancer. A friend was supposed to care for her cats and her elderly dog but hadn’t been able to keep up with their needs and the situation had spiraled out of control.
The home was in severe disarray and in need of deep cleaning, air conditioner repair, and new furnishings.
With support from their department, both officers decided to take action on their own time with their own money. Corbiere delivered several fans to help cool the resident, and then paid for the air conditioner repair out of her own pocket.
As Cunningham and Corbiere began to make improvements around the house, the scope of the needed repairs truly came in to focus. Realizing the project would need more resources than she could bring to bear, Corbiere formed a new outreach group called, Helping Hands Volunteer Clean Up, which now includes about 60 members of the community.
“I just couldn’t not help,” said Corbiere, “but Wayne and I couldn’t do it alone, so I reached out to the community, and so many people pitched in.”
Both Officers Corbiere and Cunningham and the new group of volunteers donated their time, money and resources to give the home a complete makeover with new floors, paint, furniture and appliances. The group was able to work with several local retailers to provide materials and appliances to the project.
In the Facebook group created for this project, residents of the community coordinated effort and took time to express their appreciation for efforts of both other residents and Corbiere.
“It was magical seeing how everyone came together to help her. But none of that would have been possible without you! Thank you!!” posted Diana Solis-Vargas.
Thanks to these amazing volunteers and our Animal Control officers, this kind, elderly woman now has a clean and safe home to live in. Both of these dedicated officers represent the ideals and goals of the Hutto Police Department and the City of Hutto, as well as the commitment to partnering with the citizens and volunteers of this community to improve the quality of life for all.
Thanks to these officers for your exemplary service and thanks to the volunteers of the community for your partnership in volunteerism.
For more information on how you can help, visit Helping Hands Volunteer Clean Up.