ROAD TO ZERO

Utah community raises funds to protect school crossing guards

Sep 2, 2022, 9:06 PM

People in one Cache Valley community are working together to protect their crossing guards. This comes after one was struck in a hit and run.

“I’m a grandparent and I walk some grandchildren to school every single morning,” said Jeanette Christenson.

Christenson said her perspective of those normally peaceful walks was flipped upside-down.

“After a day that a car came and just about hit me and my grandchildren and a crossing guard stopped them within 18 inches of us.”

Thankfully, no one was hurt. It was more of a wakeup call.

“I happened to have a set of twins who were 3 with me, and that would have been terrifying had they been actually hit,” she said.

Jeanette Christenson

And in talking with crossing guards that day, she heard about Ellen Stoddard.

“It was hard to stay there after it all happened,” Stoddard said.

A former crossing guard, Stoddard was struck just outside CCID charter school.

“I went out, put my cones together, and the guy coming from the stop sign didn’t see me and just turned a corner and kind of nailed my shoulder,” she said.

She was only bruised, but left feeling pretty upset.

“If you know you did it, you’d think they’d come back and at least say sorry or something.”

Ellen Stoddard

Which brings us to the solution. Christenson said she went to the Cache County Sheriff.

“And he was the one who suggested that we do some body cams, because then they could capture the license plate of, you know, people who are having difficulties in those areas,” Christenson said.

In asking for donations at events around town, Christenson said she found people were willing to give and support crossing guards.

She raised about enough for five body cams.

“And it just touched my heart and made me really excited that people would give what they could,” she said.

And with that added protection, and some driver education programs out there, she’s hopeful the streets can be a bit safer.

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Utah community raises funds to protect school crossing guards