With help from Eric Stonestreet, thankful parents go Christmas shopping with KCK cops

KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- Outside the Walmart at Legends Mall, Christmas filled the air Friday afternoon. Bell ringers collected donations, and all eyes were on a group of KCK police officers doing some holiday good.

"It makes your heart just full of warmth," KCK Officer Jackie Lynn said.

If you stepped inside the store, you probably saw Lynn and her fellow men and women in blue strolling down aisles and filling up shopping carts. They went on a shopping spree with elated parents as the moms and dads picked out Christmas toys for their kids.

"I think it's awesome. It's just a blessing. I was so overwhelmed," Rhonda Scott said.

Scott filled two big plastic bags with gifts for her 7-year-old son, Xavier.

"He's gonna be so happy when he wakes up that morning and sees all the gifts under the tree," Scott said.

Se'Ntisse Williams and her sister also enjoyed shopping with the KCK cops for their little ones.

"It's really helping me and my sister in a lot of ways because of the simple fact that we're struggling parents at this point," Williams said.

For many low-income families, Christmas can be challenging, even overwhelming, financially.

"Every little bit helps. Anything that someone's offered to bring to you or just to give you is just gratitude for me," Scott said.

For almost 20 years now, officers with KCK Police Department's Community Policing Unit have helped families during the holidays by collecting all kinds of donations.

This year more than $8,000 from generous givers poured in. A surprise big check came from a KCK native who went on to make a name for himself in Hollywood -- Eric Stonestreet.

"Yes, I was so excited and glad about it. He gave me a check for $8,400!" Officer Elaine Moore said.

Moore was ecstatic after she heard the popular actor from the hit show "Modern Family, matched every dollar the police officers collected, which allowed dozens of parents to snatch up more than $16,000 worth of Christmas toys for their children.

"It was so nice of him. It just shows that he cares enough about the community to give us money," Moore said.

"It's nice to see the good side of people. Now, those kids get to have something for Christmas," Lynn said.

"I greatly appreciate it. I want to say thank you to all of the officers for what they did," Williams said.