Two Dates and a Dash Podcast

Two Dates and a Dash Podcast Episode 76: Rocks for L.E.O.'s Founder, Heather Benson

Episode Summary

In June of 2017 my husband found a painted rock outside a local business. He brought it home and we looked up the FB page that was written on the back. It was from a local rock painting group that paints rocks and leaves them outside businesses for people to find. All with the purpose to spread kindness or make someone smile. Almost immediately we started painting and dropping rocks all over town. A couple months later I thought, wouldn’t it be nice to paint some Back the Blue rocks and leave them outside our local departments, and possibly even hand them to LEOs we see out and about? I asked the girls and they loved the idea. We painted two rocks to start. In August we took the first rock up to our Sheriff. We told him we wanted to show our thanks and appreciation for all they do, and all about our plan to start painting more rocks. The second rock we prayed that God would help us find the right deputy or officer for our rock. We wanted to give it to someone who needed it, or would appreciate it, you know, the right person! It took 2 months (it’s now October) actively looking while running errands until we found a deputy. Actually he found us as he had been in our neighborhood taking care of some business. We stopped him before he could leave and gave it to him. We couldn’t have asked for a better officer to receive our rock. Not only did we become fast friends with him and his family, but he’s the kind of friend you think of as family. He even helped us be able to visit our local precinct to hand out rocks during roll call one morning, which was truly an awesome experience! We loved surprising all of the deputies. We started painting more rocks to hand out whenever we would see a LEO out and about on the road (We always make sure to keep some in the car with us)! We’ve visited with several other departments nearby as well. The girls LOVE meeting LEOs! They ask me at least twice a week, “Are we going to any departments today?” Good thing there are a lot of departments out there! In February 2018, I thought “I should Google small town departments” and see what I can come up with. I was hoping to surprise them with our rocks. I thought it would be nice for them to know they are thought of and appreciated, even from far away. We found a 4 person department in Michigan. They loved the rocks so much they sent us a patch, their cards, and a bottle of maple syrup that is made right there in their town! So we kept looking for more departments. We have found small departments, big departments, and everything in between. We started painting and shipping rocks all over the states! We started posting on social media asking for people to nominate their favorite departments to receive our rocks. Our list grew to over 60 departments across the states within a couple hours of putting out the message! Since then we’ve continued to grow, our waiting-to-be-rocked list is multiple pages long, and we have sent rocks to 3,516 LEOs (as of February 27, 2020). 3,516!!! Over 3,500 LEOs know that they are supported, thought of, prayed for, appreciated, and THANKED by our family. Most days it leaves me speechless when I think about what we have been able to do for LEOs. We’ve reached so many, yet we have so many more to reach! Did I mention dispatchers? We try to include dispatchers as much as we can, with their own rocks featuring the thin gold line. We want to make sure they know they are appreciated as well! So that’s our story. It’s currently still being written, as we have no plans of stopping anytime soon! We are so thankful for our LEOs & dispatchers, and so thankful we are able to do this for them. Our rocks have blessed us with many friendships in real life and through social media. I can’t even express to you what that means to us. Thank you Blue! Be safe & ROCK ON! Your friends in Maryland, -RocksForLEOs

Episode Notes

In June of 2017 my husband found a painted rock outside a local business. He brought it home and we looked up the FB page that was written on the back.  It was from a local rock painting group that paints rocks and leaves them outside businesses for people to find. All with the purpose to spread kindness or make someone smile.  Almost immediately we started painting and dropping rocks all over town.

A couple months later I thought, wouldn’t it be nice to paint some Back the Blue rocks and leave them outside our local departments, and possibly even hand them to LEOs we see out and about?  I asked the girls and they loved the idea. We painted two rocks to start. In August we took the first rock up to our Sheriff. We told him we wanted to show our thanks and appreciation for all they do, and all about our plan to start painting more rocks.

The second rock we prayed that God would help us find the right deputy or officer for our rock. We wanted to give it to someone who needed it, or would appreciate it, you know, the right person! It took 2 months (it’s now October) actively looking while running errands until we found a deputy.  Actually he found us as he had been in our neighborhood taking care of some business. We stopped him before he could leave and gave it to him. We couldn’t have asked for a better officer to receive our rock. Not only did we become fast friends with him and his family, but he’s the kind of friend you think of as family. He even helped us be able to visit our local precinct to hand out rocks during roll call one morning, which was truly an awesome experience!  We loved surprising all of the deputies.

We started painting more rocks to hand out whenever we would see a LEO out and about on the road (We always make sure to keep some in the car with us)!  We’ve visited with several other departments nearby as well. The girls LOVE meeting LEOs! They ask me at least twice a week, “Are we going to any departments today?” Good thing there are a lot of departments out there!

In February 2018, I thought “I should Google small town departments” and see what I can come up with.  I was hoping to surprise them with our rocks.  I thought it would be nice for them to know they are thought of and appreciated, even from far away.  We found a 4 person department in Michigan. They loved the rocks so much they sent us a patch, their cards, and a bottle of maple syrup that is made right there in their town!  So we kept looking for more departments.

We have found small departments, big departments, and everything in between.  We started painting and shipping rocks all over the states! We started posting on social media asking for people to nominate their favorite departments to receive our rocks.  Our list grew to over 60 departments across the states within a couple hours of putting out the message! Since then we’ve continued to grow, our waiting-to-be-rocked list is multiple pages long, and we have sent rocks to 3,516 LEOs (as of February 27, 2020).  3,516!!!

Over 3,500 LEOs know that they are supported, thought of, prayed for, appreciated, and THANKED by our family.  Most days it leaves me speechless when I think about what we have been able to do for LEOs. We’ve reached so many, yet we have so many more to reach!  Did I mention dispatchers? We try to include dispatchers as much as we can, with their own rocks featuring the thin gold line. We want to make sure they know they are appreciated as well!

So that’s our story.  It’s currently still being written, as we have no plans of stopping anytime soon!  We are so thankful for our LEOs & dispatchers, and so thankful we are able to do this for them.  Our rocks have blessed us with many friendships in real life and through social media. I can’t even express to you what that means to us.

Thank you Blue! Be safe & ROCK ON!

Your friends in Maryland,

-RocksForLEOs