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Residents of the Wappoo Shores neighborhood in West Ashley collected more than $650 in the last two weeks to feed police, firefighters and first responders as a way of thanking them for their service.

Fueled by an additional in-kind donation by D’Allesandro’s Pizza in downtown Charleston, the neighbors bought 30 pies for officers on Friday afternoon. They plan to deliver as many to West Ashley firefighters next week.

“We’re so grateful for the support,” said Charleston Police Chief Luther Reynolds, who jokes how pizza, or “Vitamin P,” is his favorite food. “This is yet another example of showing how much the community cares for us.”

Charleston Mayor John Tecklenburg was on hand for the pizza handoff of boxes of pepperoni and cheese pies from the St. Philip Street shop.

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“I thank the residents of Wappoo Shores neighborhood, with the help of D’Allesandro’s, for being so thoughtful to our first responders on the front lines” during the coronavirus pandemic.

Julia Sauer, who coordinated the neighborhood’s effort, said she got the idea to give back to first responders because they routinely sacrifice their health to help people across Charleston.

“Thank you for putting your lives on the line,” she told Reynolds. Earlier in an email to families in the neighborhood off Savannah Highway, she wrote, “I am very grateful to be living in such a close-knit neighborhood and community where people care about each other and where help is not just a word without meaning but actually carries intention and actions.”