Operation Fuzzy Wuzzy: Bienville deputies grow facial hair to show they care

By Bonnie Culverhouse

Some guys grow beards during hunting season. Others grow beards during the giving season. Then there are those who do both.

A group of deputies with Bienville Parish Sheriff’s Office have expanded their facial hair in order to donate money to the annual Minden St. Jude Auction in “Operation Fuzzy Wuzzy.”

“A year ago, some of my guys came to me and asked if they could grow beards for hunting season,” said Bienville Sheriff John Ballance. “I said no, indeed. This year they came back and asked again.”

The deputies agreed to put money in a pot specifically to donate to a charity. The sheriff chose St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital through the Minden St. Jude Auction, and the campaign began to grow beards as well as money. He even offered to match what the deputies grew – in money, not the beard.

Ballance said they began collecting and growing in November and have kept it going.

“Some of my deputies can’t grow beards,” he said. “The ladies wanted to participate, too, so I told them they could still put in money.”

Wednesday afternoon, the sheriff and a couple of his fuzziest wuzzies met St. Jude Auction folks at the Minden Civic Center to present a check for $7,500.

Ballance said he would like to see some of the surrounding law enforcement agencies participate next year.

Consider the challenge flag thrown.

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