Indianapolis boy on mission to better protect local police
An Indianapolis boy has reached his fundraiser goal to help Indianapolis Metro Police. Jacen Troxell has helped raise over $10,000 to buy bulletproof plates for IMPD officers.
The recent crime in Indianapolis has hurt metro Hoosiers, especially with the death of IMPD Officer Perry Renn. But for one little boy, the shootings and violence are very personal.
From the moment Jacen and Ben Troxell were born, they gave a piece of themselves to the City of Indianapolis.
"That was hard when they got up in the middle of the night and sometimes dad wasn't there," said Jacen and Ben's mom, Tracy Troxell.
Every night, their dad, IMPD Det. Andy Troxell, patrolled the streets as an IMPD officer, often working side-by-side with Officer Renn.
"He was the one, during the first part of my career, that I trusted on all of my runs, and even my wife trusted," Andy.
When 8-year-old Jacen was four years old, his teacher asked the class to think of their wishes for the world. Jacen, a pre-schooler, knew exactly what his wish would be.
"My wish was that police officers would not get killed," Jacen Troxell said.
Four years later, his wish has not been fulfilled.
"No, that wish did not come true," he said.
Last week came the death of IMPD officer and friend Perry Renn. Renn was wearing a bullet resistant vest the night he was killed, but he was shot with a high-powered rifle and the vest could not save his life.
Andy Troxell served as a pallbearer at Renn's funeral. Jacen also felt broken.
"They understand that those dangers are there. This time really hit close to home," Tracy said.
"Some of these people were your friends, and that makes me sad and most people are sad when their wish doesn't come true," Jacen said.
On a mission to bring his wish back to life, Jacen had a thought. He wanted better protection for local police. He and his family started a project on gofundme.com to buy special front and back bulletproof plates for officers. When used with a vest, the plates can stop rifle fire.
The plates, however, can cost several hundred dollars each. Jacen set the bar high, hoping to raise $10,000. This week, he reached his goal.
"He wanted to do it for the officers that are out there, the ones that are on the front line, that this might happen to. And basically starting with Officer Renn's shift," Andy said.
"I would like them to know what they do, like let them know very well what they do," Jacen said.
A little boy with a giant heart and an even bigger wish for his dad, our officers and city.
"Police officers don't just do that, they protect us. A lot of them get hurt doing this," Jacen said.
Andy now works as a detective and does not spend as much time patrolling the streets. However, when he was just a rookie in 2004, he was one of five officers shot when IMPD Officer Timothy "Jake" Laird was shot and killed.