A young girl in Tennessee quenched thirsts and warmed hearts Saturday while raising more than $1,000 to benefit the family of a fallen deputy. Caroline Freeman Piche, a 6-year-old in Mt. Juliet, set up a lemonade stand outside her home with a goal of collecting funds for the wife and daughter of Dickson County Sheriff’s Sgt. Daniel Baker, who was shot and killed in the line of duty May 30. And it didn’t take long for the word to spread.
She raised $1,125 in less than five hours, with many of her customers being officers from the area. Some even let the 6-year-old climb into the driver’s seat of their squad cars.
“Thank you, Caroline, for touching all of our hearts,” Mt. Juliet Police said in a video about her efforts. “Your compassion is a strong reminder of the goodness in the world.”
Caroline hopes to become a police officer when she grows up, the department said, and her mother said she let her daughter choose the charity her lemonade stand would benefit.
Mt. Juliet Police Captain Tyler Chandler said he visited Caroline’s lemonade stand to show her how much the “department appreciated her efforts.”
Baker, a 10-year veteran of the Dickson County department and a member of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, was shot while responding to a call from a resident about a suspicious car.
Authorities believe 31-year-old Steven Wiggins shot Baker, and he was arrested on June 1 after a two-day manhunt. Authorities arrested and charged a second person, Erika Castro-Miles, whom they believe participated in the incident.
“There are no words to describe the level of devastation myself and my family are dealing with,” Baker’s widow, Lisa, said in a statement earlier this month. “His service to his country and community will always be remembered.”
Caroline, holding a pink poster board with the total raised, thanked all those who came out to her stand and bought a cup of lemonade.