The Atlanta Hawks basketball team has presented one of its “True to Atlanta” awards to Dunwoody Police officers who recently helped three homeless people get warm clothes and, for one man, a bus ticket to visit an ailing relative.

The award, sponsored by the health care consortium Kaiser Permanente, recognizes people “who are building bridges in their community… [and] leaders who are using impactful volunteerism to empower their communities,” according to the Hawks’ website.

The six officers from the department’s “D-Team” were honored in a halftime ceremony at the Jan. 15 Hawks game at Philips Arena, according to a press release, and received personalized jerseys and a $1,000 check to donate to their chosen charity, Special Olympics Georgia.

The officers were honored for their actions in the early morning hours of Nov. 15, 2016, when a patrol encountered three young people near a Dunwoody business. The people turned out to be homeless and in need of better clothing. One of them said he was attempting to make his way to Biloxi, Miss., to visit his terminally ill grandfather, so the officers bought him a one-way bus ticket with their own money. The other two people planned to remain in metro Atlanta, so the officers went onto social media to ask for community donations of warm clothing and were quickly able to properly clothe them, according to a department press release.

The department members honored were Sgt. Sean Lenahan and Officers Joshua Carruth, Justin Hensal, Joshua Sanders, Guinevere Wiencek and Zach Woodburn.

John Ruch is an Atlanta-based journalist. Previously, he was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.

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