Small acts of kindness often reverberate out in wider circles than the folks who perform them anticipate, and that is proving true for Brittany Mueller and Cortnie Schattner of Racine.
The 20-year-old criminal justice majors – they attend University of Wisconsin-Parkside – made bracelets for themselves to show their support for law enforcement. Featuring the blue line associated with police interwoven into a black braid and “held” together by a tiny pair of handcuffs, the bracelets are now being sought after from as far away as Europe.
“We just put a picture of them on Facebook to show our support for police and my inbox blew up with requests,” Mueller explained. “We’ve heard from every state, Canada and Europe now. It’s been amazing to be able to get the word out about appreciating police officers.”
On Saturday, Mueller decided to take note of “Thank a Police Officer Day” by putting together a few gift bags for Racine County Sheriff’s Office deputies. Inside each bag was a gift card, candy, gum, a thank you note, and, of course, a bracelet. Her act of kindness was posted on the RCSO Facebook page.
“We are so thankful for the wonderful people in Racine County that support us not only today..but everyday,” the post reads.
Mueller first got interested in becoming a police officer while she was in high school exploring a career in the medical field. She had the opportunity to shadow former Racine County Medical Examiner Tom Terry when they were called to the scene of a suicide.
“I was helping take photographs and I got to meet the officers who were there,” she remembered. “They all played a number of roles that day, and I realized that I want to help people who can’t help themselves.”
Mueller is looking forward to graduating in June 2018 and starting her career, hopefully with an agency in either Kenosha, Milwaukee or Racine counties. As a member of the Sheriff’s Office Explorer Post, she knows a lot about how RCSO runs and has ties to it, but she doesn’t have a preference for either police or sheriff positions. Mueller said she just wants to remain in Southeast Wisconsin.
“I see myself eventually moving into an investigative or detective role, so that’s why I’m getting my bachelor’s degree instead of my associate’s,” she added. “Plus, I have a little sister I really don’t want to be far from so I will stick around here after graduation.”
More, Mueller and Schattner will pack up a number of bracelets next month so they can attend an event in Minnesota hosted by the Concerns of Police Survivors group there, and they plan to bring a number of bracelets to give to police and their families. The pair will also have enough to sell and plan to donate the proceeds to the survivor’s group.
In the meantime, she and Schattner will continue running their business – B&C Bracelets – making bracelets and showing their appreciation for police while they both work toward their futures in law enforcement.
“It’s important that law enforcement know they’re appreciated,” Mueller continued. “There’s a lot of negativity out there, and I see it even while I’m in school, but it inspires me to be the best officer I can be.”
To order a bracelet, visit the B&C website. Bracelets are $15 each.