ITHACA -- They called it "A Major Fundraiser" -- and they had good reason for the name. All seven stations in Saga's Cayuga Radio Group urged listeners for contributions to help bring a new police K-9 to Tompkins County after the previous dog, Major, recently died of cancer. Listeners surpassed all expectations.
The seven stations started their fundraising efforts at 6:00 this morning, explaining to listeners that Major's death in March was so unexpected, the county hadn't budgeted for the cost of a new dog. Major was the department's only K-9. Personalities explained to listeners how police dogs can help with a wide variety of tasks -- from tracking suspects and locating missing persons to sniffing out contraband and defending officers from attackers.
By the end of morning drive, the stations had reached their goal of $6,500, the cost of acquiring a new dog. But they kept the effort going, since anything above the goal would help defray additional costs for training, healthcare, food, equipment and other needs. At day's end, the total amount raised exceeded $12,000.
“I’m overwhelmed by the outpouring of this community, and I’m so proud of the Cayuga Radio Group staff for fully supporting this cause," said Cayuga Radio Group GM Susan Johnston. "It is obvious that the Tompkins County Sheriffs Department had the community’s full support with raising funds for a new Police K-9.”
The Saga stations operating under the Cayuga Radio Group umbrella include WHCU News-Talk 870/95.9, Q-Country 103.7 (WQNY), Progressive Talk 1470 (WNYY), Lite Rock 97.3 (WYXL), rocker I-100 (WIII), Hits 103.3 (W277BS) and Triple-A 98.7 The Vine (W254BF).
Donations are still being accepted by mail to:
Tompkins Trust Co.
PO BOX 406
Ithaca NY, 14851
Attn. Sue Lason
Make checks payable to Tompkins County Sheriff Department K-9 Donation.