LOCAL NEWS

Santaquin Police Department appreciates community support

May 31, 2024, 6:20 PM | Updated: 6:50 pm

SANTAQUIN — Any business owner will tell you advertising is an important part of getting customers in the door.

Matt Smith, the manager of Big O’ Tires in Santaquin, understands you have to let people know where you are, what you do, and what deals you have.

“Word of mouth also helps us a lot,” Smith said while helping customers and answering phones. “During the summer, we are busy.”

Smith also understands there are some messages you put on your business that are more important than trying to make a dollar.

“It was a sad day that Sunday morning finding out that Sgt. Hooser passed. It hit home for a lot of us. We feel the pain, too,” Smith said.

Santaquin Police Sgt. Bill Hooser was killed in the line of duty earlier this month.

It is why this small town is still full of messages of support, from ribbons and flags to signs and posters on businesses.

Officers see those messages and say they sure do appreciate them.

“I would be lying if I told you that I haven’t expressed more emotion, even by myself in my car, as we pass those things,” Santaquin Police Lt. Mike Wall said. “The emotions are still raw, but we appreciate all the support we have been getting from the community.”

However, everyone in town knows time moves on, and things eventually get back to normal.

“Yeah, I mean, the work never stops, right? It doesn’t matter what happens,”  Santaquin Police Chief Rod Hurst said.

That’s why Hurst wanted to do something extra to never forget.

The department is making and selling coins of Sgt. Hooser, similar to the challenge coins popular with law-enforcement agencies.

The difference with this coin, though, is Hooser’s family will benefit.

“All the proceeds will go to the Hooser family,” Hurst said. “We just thought it was the right thing to do. Felt like the right thing to do.”

Anyone interested in buying a coin should contact the Santaquin Police Department.

Hurst said only about 200 coins are being made, and should be ready in about a month.

The deadline for ordering the coins is June 15 and will cost $20 each.

The coin is addition to another coin being made by a Saratoga Springs Police Officer to also help the Hooser family.

It is just another way for the department to continue helping a family who already paid so much.

“They paid the ultimate sacrifice and they can’t give anymore,” Hurst said.

It helps knowing they have a community full of people who understand the cost.

“I appreciate what they do,” Smith said. “They have a tough job. They really do.”

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Santaquin Police Department appreciates community support