East Texas teen raises money for bulletproof vests, presents them to deputies

East Texas teen raises money for bulletproof vests, presents them to deputies
(Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff)

WOOD COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - An east Texas Boy Scout has reached his goal of serving the first responders in his community.

This summer, Jaxon Holland, 13, began working to raise money for 31 bulletproof vests in 31 days for the sheriff's deputies in Wood County.

He surpassed his goal and was able to purchase 38 level 4 bulletproof vests. The new equipment was displayed at the Mineola Civic Center on Saturday as the community gathered to celebrate Holland's accomplishment.

"People are always happy when Christmas rolls around and this is just like Christmas," said Wood County Sheriff Tom Castloo.

Throughout the summer Holland waited tables, sold t-shirts and hosted several fundraising events with the goal of raising enough money for 31 bulletproof vests in 31 days.

"If I could take what Jackson has and somehow plant that into other kids his age or even twice his age, the world would be a lot better place to live," Castloo said.

Not only did Holland reach his goal but he surpassed it. He was able to provide vests for not only the sheriff's deputies, the Wood County constables, Hawkins Police Department, the Wood County Fire Marshal and the counties court security.

"If there is a raid or something going on and we think someone could be armed with a long arm, we would put that on over the level three. So you've got that protection and the protection under it just adds that more to it," Castloo said.

Holland says even though this project is completed, he's already looking for more ways to give back. "I was kind of thinking about the fire department now," Holland said.

Each vest cost about $400. Holland also raised enough to purchase a K-9 vest which cost $1,000.

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