My bands

KIND-HEARTED cops across Basildon are going “above and beyond” the call of duty to show support for an injured colleague.

Officers across the borough are wearing blue and grey rubber wristbands, displaying the words “above and beyond”.

The wristbands were designed by PC Simon Bailey to raise cash to support their colleague Reece Clarke, who was injured in a road accident last year.

But as well as helping to raise money to pay for the 19-year-old’s future treatment and rehabilitation, the words sum up that the volunteer special constable is always in their thoughts.

PC Bailey said: “I wanted to get some wristbands to raise money as they are a good visible way
for people to support Reece whilst he is rehabilitating in hospital.

“We chose the words above and beyond because we wanted it to also symbolise the support and assistance the Special Constabulary as a whole give to regular police officers.

“Every day, specials go above and beyond and work alongside us to make our communities safer, and Reece and his fight to recover is quite a profound representation of that.”

Reece, who is from Shoebury, was the passenger in a police car responding to an emergency when it collided with a taxi on Broadmayne near its junction with Southernhay, Basildon, on July 24 last year.

Reece suffered injuries to his brain as well as multiple fractures and damage to his lungs.

He was initially in a coma after the crash, but can now whisper, laugh and interact with people.

The former Shoeburyness High School pupil remains at the specialist Northwick Park Hospital in Middlesex.

Reece joined Essex Police as a volunteer officer and PC Bailey had worked with him up to the accident.

PC Bailey added of Reece: “As soon as he got to grips with the role, he showed how keen he was, and would get stuck in with every part of the job, even the less glamorous parts, like paperwork.

“Whenever he worked a shift, he was always first to start, and would leave with the last officer on. That kind of enthusiasm didn’t go unnoticed by us.”

The wristbands, which are being sold to officers, are just one of several fundraising ventures being carried out by Reece’s colleagues.

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