DETROIT – Wayne County Sheriff Benny Napoleon made it his mission every Christmas to help families struggling through the cold of winter with annual gift drives.
Napoleon lost a hard-fought battle with coronavirus Dec. 17. He was 65 years old.
Community leaders carried on the tradition in honor of Napoleon at the Greater Grace Temple.
It’s a bittersweet Christmas for Tristan Shannon’s family, but thankfully they’re receiving coats and other necessities.
“It’s wonderful. It’s such a blessing,” Shannon said. “It’s such a blessing. Especially the time that we’re in right now.”
“This is something that sheriff Napoleon would have been doing if he was here,” said Wayne County deputy Robert Dunlap.
Dunlap was a closer friend of Napoleon’s. He said Saturday’s event was more than fitting for the legacy of the late sheriff.
“When I stepped out of the car it was very emotional, very bittersweet,” Dunlap said. “You couldn’t help but think about the sheriff.”
It’s just one of the many ways sheriff Napoleon’s legacy is kept alive.
“It’s such a tragic loss for the city,” Shannon said. “Cause Benny Napoleon was such a great guy.”
There will be a public viewing on Monday, Dec. 28 at Swanson Funeral Home from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., family members announced on Facebook Sunday. Swanson Funeral Home is located at 806 East Grand Boulevard in Detroit.