RICHMOND, Va. -- They may stand shoulder to shoulder in the fight against crime - but at The Diamond, police officers Carol Adams and Joey Kierson are going head to head.
“Its everyone trying to get that edge. Because we all want to win. We are all type-A personality. It’s a lot of fun,” Kierson said.
She's referring to an event on Saturday afternoon where officers, deputies and troopers from 8 departments across Richmond will play in a pitched softball tournament at the home of the Squirrels.
“I remember Joey calling me talking about Richmond playing Chesterfield,” says Officer Adams.
The stakes in the day long affair are high - especially when bragging rights are on the line.
“Law enforcement is more than just taking bad guys to jail,” Kierson said.
But beyond the banter and fun and games lies a serious mission for all involved.
“Again, for us its children first. We’re going to bat for the kids,” Kierson said.
The officers are competing for those who can’t. Kierson, a founder, says the game will raise money for the Children’s Hospital of Richmond - and many of the young patients will leave their hospital bed to cheer on the officers in person.
“To see the smiles on their faces and the joy it is awesome,” says Kierson. “The more money we collect has a direct link to the children on the other side of 95 on Brook Road."
Sarah Irby says the police provide an escape for the 40 children who live at the hospital
“We are the only full-service children’s hospital in the Richmond area,” says Irby. “Its once a year. It’s a big day. We prep for it all year long.”
Only one team will take top honors, but at the end of this tourney everyone wins.
“It just shows what policing is. We’re not just here when you call 911. We’re always here. We’re part of the community,” Kierson said. “And we care about our children just like anyone else does.”
Before Saturday’s game. a parade of police vehicles will move through the Children’s Hospital campus for the patients who can’t leave.
Gates at the Diamond will open at noon and admission is free for all.