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Oct 10, 2015 9:24 AM

Beards for Bucks: Manchester police grow facial hair as a fundraiser


MANCHESTER - Facial hair is the latest fashion statement by dozens of police officers in the city who are hoping to raise money for a child advocacy organization.

"We decided we’re going to grow beards to support a charity that’s near and dear to my heart, who gets very limited funds through state and federal grants and that’s the Child Advocacy Center of Hillsborough [County]," said Manchester Chief Nick Willard, sporting several days growth on his chin.

"What they do is forensic interviews of children who are victims of sexual abuse or any sort of violence — or even witness to trauma," he explained.

Seeing officers with fuzzy faces is leading to questions as officers are out in the community. "It spurs conversation so when somebody sees an officer, they see a beard, and they question why is MPD growing beards now," Willard said.

But it hasn't been easy for leader used to a more clean-cut appearance.

"Even now though I'm struggling with how I look, so I find myself--everywhere I go--I have to tell people that I am growing this for charity. It's not because the job is wearing me out or I've relaxed standards here at the police department."

At last check, the department had raised $12,000.

There's a website to donate -- and you can donate in the name of your favorite officer.

Or just scroll through the list and pick one.


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