NORRIDGEWOCK – Following the murder of Cpl. Eugene Cole, charitable efforts have begun sprouting up in the area. Most are real while, unfortunately, some are fake. One tireless resident, supported by her community, is working to support the Cole family in a very real way.
In the wake of tragedy, the world often sees samples of the best of humankind. To Norridgewock residents, Brandi Ireland has become a shining example of that.
Town Manager Richard LaBelle says, soon after Cpl. Cole’s passing, Brandi began using one of her many talents to make bracelets to sell, giving all proceeds to the Cole family.
We’re told Brandi expected to donate a few hundred dollars worth of bracelets for her efforts. That soon went out the window.
“We have a rough estimation that we’re closing in on the sale of 350 [bracelets],” LaBelle said. “[Brandi] has a passion for the community. She grew up with Gene Cole on the streets around here.”
As of close of business on Thursday, donations for the bracelets were estimated at just shy of $2,000 and counting.
But, while working day and night, Brandi soon ran out of supplies. That’s when good samaritans, including the Bangor Police Department, went out of their way to clean out craft stores. Even with the help, because Brandi wants to keep them all handmade in Norridgewock, donors are asked to be patient as the demand keeps growing.
“We appreciate the level of support that they’re showing for our community, for law enforcement throughout the state and the nation,” LaBelle added. “Bear with us, because we want to get these to folks.”