Fond du Lac woman crochets for “Shop with a Cop” program

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 4:17 PM CDT
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FOND DU LAC, Wis. (WBAY) - The Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office set the date for its annual “Shop with a Cop” event. Through the generosity of the community, the department will help more than 50 families this holiday season. And, thanks to a dedicated volunteer, no child will go cold this winter.

Marilyn Drake has been crafty almost her entire life. She says, “When I was in grade school my mother taught me embroidery work and fine stitches. And then for a number of years when I raised my family and worked, I kind of dropped things, but once my husband passed away in 2003 I started back at my crocheting.”

Since then, Drake, who has a yarn room in her home, has crocheted thousands of items -- including nearly 4,000 prayer shawls.

According to Drake, “I’m 87 years old and I need to be doing something, something useful, and this is it.”

And it was just a couple of weeks ago, according to her tally sheet, that she completed hat or scarf number 6,400. A hat and scarf combo takes her two hours and fifteen minutes to crochet, that’s thousands of hours of work, on items over the years, that she simply donates to those in need.

“I usually give out anywhere from 500 to 600 every year at Christmastime. Shop with a Cop here in Fond du Lac is one of my favorites,” says Drake.

Drake says she’s crocheted 2,300 items for Fond du Lac’s Shop with a Cop in the past 15 years. She handed off her latest batch of donations last week. It’s a yearly donation that almost leaves the sheriff’s office speechless.

“I can’t think of the words to share her generosity other than just a huge heart and truly somebody, for nothing in return, wants to help out the families and the children in this Fond du Lac community. It’s amazing, and I hope other communities and states and other places are lucky enough to have somebody like Marilyn,” says Deputy Kieran Weed.

Drake doesn’t crochet the donations for recognition, she simply does it out of the goodness of her heart.

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