Muskogee's first responders have had a tough year so far, so a steak dinner cooked in their honor is a nice way to say thanks for all they do.

First responders were treated Sunday by Steaks 4 Sheepdogs and the community.

So far this year, first responders have had to deal with the memories of a mass shooting in which small children were shot and killed. Not long after that, a teenage couple led police on a pursuit that resulted in one of the teens taking his own life, and the other was killed in a shootout with police.

The officers involved, as well as the paramedics, have children. When these things happen, their minds are naturally drawn to their own families. They can relate. The sights, sounds and smells of what they witness are carried with them. They don't just get out of bed the next day and forget what they've seen.

Enter Steaks 4 Sheepdogs. The nonprofit organization that is based in Bentonville, Ark., was founded by Joe Wilson after he saw a story about a shooting in Dallas that claimed the lives of 11 police officers and wounded three. He just wanted to to something to ease the pain the remaining officers felt. He decided he was going to feed everyone at the police department. They cooked 150 rib eye dinners. Since then, the organization has cooked 30,000 rib eye steak dinners. The community chips in to pay for the dinners, and Steaks 4 Sheepdogs prepare the meals.

It may not seem like much to some, but the idea behind the dinner is to show first responders that the community cares and is grateful.

Thank you all for what you do every day to make Muskogee a better place.

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