Grateful Linda gifts puppy to dog unit

Insp Di Lewis, Sgt Gareth Jackson and Linda Groom with Sparky
Insp Di Lewis, Sgt Gareth Jackson and Linda Groom with Sparky

A SPECIAL donation has been made to Sussex Police by a woman seriously injured in a collision three years ago.

Linda Groom, 58, from Eastbourne, was badly hurt when she was hit by a car while on a pelican crossing on the A2270 Eastbourne Road at Willingdon in 2008.

To thank the emergency services who helped her she has donated a puppy called Sparky to the police’s dog unit.

Linda, who continues to suffer from the injuries she sustained as a result of the collision, raised money to buy the puppy through a two-mile sponsored walk in Eastbourne on September 19 this year – three years since she was injured.

Speaking after meeting Sparky for the first time Linda said, “I did a walk to raise money for the police to say a big thank you for being so quick to the scene of the accident and for being so gentle with my family.

“My carer and I were treated like royalty by the police on the day of the presentation and everyone was so kind and caring. I feel proud to have had the honour of meeting Sparky.”

Inspector Di Lewis of Sussex Police’s Dog Unit said, “We are very grateful to Linda for donating Sparky to the unit.

“Sparky is a 10-week old German Shepherd bred specifically for police work by the Metropolitan Police.

“Sparky has already become one of the team and as he gets older will go through training to become a fully-fledged police dog.

“We will keep Linda up to date with Sparky’s progress through his time with the puppy walker, when he is allocated to a handler and through his initial training course.

“Police dogs play a vital role in modern day policing, supporting police officers throughout the county to protect the people of Sussex.”