To protect and serve: Ringling Police Department offers to pick up groceries, medications for elderly residents

Sierra Rains

While individuals across the nation are being encouraged to stay in their homes due to the spread of COVID-19, one local police department is offering to help pick up groceries and medications for elderly people in need of assistance.

As of Thursday, March 19, Ringing Police Department Chief Josh Steury said anyone who needs assistance and is living within Ringling city limits during this time is encouraged to contact the department or Steury directly and they will be helped as best as they can.

“If they don’t have family that can come out and help them because they’re locked down or something like that, just whatever they need,” Steury said. “We’re still able to get out and get around.”

Steury said he first saw the idea being implemented by the Locust Grove Police Department near Tulsa and wanted to bring a similar service to the small-town Ringling community.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, older adults, 65 years of age and older, are at a higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

While self-isolation is being encouraged for all age groups to prevent the spread of the virus, it is especially important for this older age group to distance themselves from other people, according to the CDC.

“Everybody is scared and doesn’t know what’s going to happen next. If we all stick together and keep ourselves spaced out like we’re supposed to — but help each other out,” Steury said. “You know, it’s bad enough seeing pictures of the Ardmore Walmart where they can’t find anything.”

As the only CLEET certified officer in Ringling, Steury said he will likely be the one answering calls and taking various items to the elderly. However, there are other reserve officers and people willing to help, as well.

“We’re a small town and everybody knows me so most people have my cell phone number anyways,” Steury said. “But they can call dispatch and ask for an officer to come out and we’ll come out and help them however we can.”

The Ringling Police Department dispatch can be reached at 580-228-2375. “In these times we should strive to come together and unite as a community to overcome these circumstances,” Steury said.