Saturday’s pro-police parade in Hardin provided 140 meals for officers

Stephanie Johnson Clark (right) is pictured with Savannah Ardoin, Martin Trahan and Chris Dryer before the start of a pro-law enforcement parade on Saturday in Hardin. (Submitted photo)

The City of Hardin, with the help of the Hardin Lions Club, hosted its first parade since the late 80s last Saturday.  People from across Liberty County came to participate and show their appreciation for Law Enforcement. 

According to one of the organizers, Stephanie Johnson Clark, the “Back the Blue” idea actually came from her husband, Brett Clark of Hardin.  

“One day this summer, he walked up to me out of the blue and said, ‘What do you think it would take to have a parade, right here in town, that showed our support for police?’  My thoughts were to go to social media. Surely, someone could point us in the right direction,” said Clark.

Following her advice, Brett posted his idea to the New Hardin Information page on Facebook and the idea was well received by the community. 

“Soon enough, I was contacted by Bonita Davis from the Lions Club. We talked about combining Brett’s idea of a parade with a pancake supper that the Lions had done in the past to benefit the Sheriff’s Office,” Clark said. 

With the help of Keisha Robinson, Nikki Linn, Samantha Pickett, Tonya Tinney and Clark, the devised simple route of rural, county roads in Hardin that would be ideal for the parade path.

Clark explained that her inspiration came from her husband.

“Brett is a former United States Marine Sergeant. He and I have a great respect for law enforcement.  I’ve always viewed anyone who chooses a profession where they may not come home at the end of the day as very admirable.  After the way things have gone this past year, this was something we really thought just needed to happen,” she said.  

The pro-law enforcement parade on Saturday in Hardin was led by a Liberty-Dayton Chrysler Jeep driven by Martin Trahan (standing, bottom right) and carrying Pct. 2 Commissioner Greg Arthur (standing, bottom left), Lions Club’s Bonita Davis and her daughter, Savannah Ardoin, and Hardin Mayor Harry Johnson. (Submitted photo)

What originally was supposed to have been an appreciation dinner with guest speakers turned to gift certificates for officers to purchase a meal.

“The COVID-19 pandemic really put a kink in our plans, but that didn’t stop us.  We were very lucky to have teamed up with Los Compadres in Hardin. They are constantly showing their support in this small community and we were glad to bring them the business.  We ended up collecting $1,450. That was huge, considering this was our first event like this,” Clark said. “We would like to thank every donor who helped us feed more than 140 officers across the county.”  

Clark offered special thanks also to Dave “Showdog” Chessher, who volunteered as emcee.

The donors included:

  • Mayor of Hardin, Harry Johnson and wife, Penny
  • Ralph and Dian Cmedla
  • Blackgold Services
  • Brooke Dubois and family
  • Genie and Kendon Clark
  • Send It Performance, LLC
  • Tanya Duff and family
  • Hardin Hose & Hydraulic
  • Penny Johnson and family
  • Ernie and Samantha Pickett
  • Jake and Kristi Mullins
  • Brett and Stephanie Clark
  • Yvonne Doskocil
  • Janet Russell and family
  • Luke and Amanda Roberts
  • Anita Ratliff
  • Jeanette Myers and family
  • Yarbrough Farms
  • Julie Terry
  • Signature Home Health
  • Ascend Hospice
  • Fishtales Restaurant of Hardin
  • Smart Oilfield
  • FLNB
  • C&L Vacuum
  • Anonymous donor
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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


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