WATERLOO, IL - Blue lights surrounded the Waterloo City Hall on Monday night. The display is part of a community effort to show support for area first responders following the death of Illinois State Trooper Nick Hopkins. He was killed while serving a high-risk search warrant.
Waterloo Mayor Tom Smith said the lights go beyond support for the widow and children of Trooper Hopkins. He said, “It’s also for Blake Snyder, Officer Langsdorf, Kyle Deatherage, the officer in Arnold that was shot but is still alive. We all support law enforcement.”
Ashley Hewitt has helped organize a fundraising effort for Hopkins’ family. More than 4,000 t-shirts have been sold. She also helped sell 4,200 blue light bulbs. Residents came to the Waterloo Fire House to buy them until they were all gone.
“Everybody wants to show their support,” said Hewitt. “We want people to turn on their light bulbs blue lights and keep them lit through September 11th to show their support for Nick Hopkins and all first responders.”
T-shirts benefiting Hopkins’ family are still for sale. Anyone who is interested in ordering one should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volunteers said some of the organizations that have helped with their efforts include Shorty’s Smokehouse, Papa Vito’s. Ahne’s Bakery, Schnucks, Dollar General, Walmart, Waterloo Fire and Rescue, State Bank of Waterloo and Full Throttle Screen Printing.
Donations can also be made to the Hopkins family by visiting the Illinois State Police Heritage Foundation website at www.isphf.org/donations, or via U.S. mail to Illinois State Police Heritage Foundation, P.O. Box 8168, Springfield, Illinois 62791. On the website, note in the comments section, “Trooper Nick Hopkins Memorial Fund.”
Donations to BackStoppers may be made online at https://backstoppers.org/donate or by check mailed to The BackStoppers, PO Box 795168, St. Louis, MO 63179-0700. The BackStoppers supports the Hopkins family and families of fallen heroes by paying off all debt, providing health and dental insurance, reimbursing for out-of-pocket medical expenses, assisting with tuition and educational costs from daycare through university, and assisting with miscellaneous extraordinary expenses.