The Salvation Army Provides Support Following Americus Shooting

December 08, 2016
Donald Felice | | (404) 550-3716

The Salvation Army Provides Support Following Americus Shooting

AMERICUS, GA (December 8, 2016) – The Salvation Army provided hot coffee, snacks and hydration to incident responders at the Police Command Center late into the night and early hours following the shooting of two law enforcement officers in Americus, Georgia.

At approximately 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, December 7, Georgia Southwestern State University was put in lockdown status after a reported shooting of two law enforcement officials answering a domestic disturbance call. Americus police officer Nicholas Ryan Smarr was killed at the scene, and Georgia State University officer Jodi Smith died of his injuries Thursday afternoon. Both were long-time friends since high school. The suspect, 32-year-old Minguell Kennedy Lembrick, shot himself Thursday morning after a standoff with law enforcement officials at his Americus home.

The Salvation Army Americus mobile canteen was deployed at the request of Americus Fire Department Battalion Chief, Tommy Whitaker, who also serves as The Salvation Army Advisory Board Chairman for Americus. The mobile canteen was stationed at the Police Command Center shortly after it was set up on Wednesday afternoon to provide hydration, snacks and hot coffee to responders. The Salvation Army staff and volunteers continued to serve responders through the late hours of Wednesday, and again starting in the early hours of Thursday until 3:00 p.m.  

A total of over 200 cups of hot coffee, 350 snacks and 100 bottles of water were served to a very thankful parade of local and state law enforcement and fire officials.

“The people we served were so thankful we were there for them,” said Misty Belcher, The Salvation Army Service Center Director for Americus. “One Georgia Bureau of Investigation agent stopped by to say ‘Thank you,’ gave me a GBI pin and told me I was an honorary part of the GBI team for the day.”

 “The Salvation Army has been on the scene of the shooting providing hot coffee, snacks and hydration throughout the incident,” said Major Jack Butler, The Salvation Army of Georgia Emergency Disaster Director. “I want to thank our Salvation Army staff and volunteers for what they are doing as they serve ‘in His name’ to those in crisis.”

Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the fallen officers, and with the city of Americus.

About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, established in London in 1865, has been supporting those in need without discrimination for more than 135 years in the U.S. More than 25 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless, and opportunities for underprivileged children. The Salvation Army tracks the level of need across the country with the Human Needs Index ( The Salvation Army has served survivors of every major national disaster since 1900. The Salvation Army does not place an administrative fee on disaster donations. During emergency disasters, 100 percent of designated gifts are used to support specific relief efforts. For more information, go to or follow on Twitter @SalvationArmyUS.

Our Mission

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.
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