HOBART | A Hobart pre-teen has designs on helping support the Hobart police canine division.
Spencer Moravec, 12, has launched Paws For A Cause, a fundraiser which includes the sale of T-shirts, car magnets and rubber bracelets.
The logo on the T-shirt, which includes the face of a German shepherd, was designed by Moravec on his computer.
Moravec, a sixth-grader at Hobart Middle School, said he became interested in helping support the canine division after reading an item on Facebook this past fall.
The item included information about Cpl. Simon Gresser's dog, Rommel, who was being retired after suffering a stroke. Rommel later died from complications of the stroke.
"I wanted to help raise money for another dog for the canine unit so I called Cpl. Simon Gresser," Moravec said.
Moravec and his mother, Kim Moravec, knew Gresser because he had been his baseball coach a few years ago.
Gresser, who heads up Hobart's canine division, admits he was impressed when Spencer approached him about raising money.
"He really stepped up to plate. I wasn't surprised since he had motivation and dedication at an early age," Gresser said.
Money raised through the Paws For A Cause will be used to pay for the cost of two new dogs, Spike and Scout, recently bought by the canine division.
Spike, a 1-year-old Belgian malinois, was bought in Canada, and was assigned to Officer Ryan Snedecor.
Snedecor's dog, Fax, was retired due to vision problems.
The second newest member to the department is Scout, a 2-year-old German shepherd from Germany who was assigned to Gresser.
The dogs, who cost $19,500, will begin their training early this month and should be ready to assist their handlers by the beginning of April, police said.
The canine division also will buy a dog for Officer Kevin Garber Jr., who is replacing Officer Darren Sandilla who stepped down.
"We now have three teams in the canine division but we'll soon be back up to four," Gresser said.
The cost of the items is $15 for the T-shirts sizes small through extra-large; $6 for the bracelets and $5 for the car magnets.
Send payments to 2648 McAfee Drive, Hobart, IN 46342.
Checks should be made payable to Hobart FOP, 121 K9 fund.
For more information, call the canine division at (219) 942-4482.