Carline family donates teddy bears to APSO

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Chief Deputy Tony Bacala, Sheriff Jeff Wiley, Troy and Lisa Carline, Deputy Steven Coriell, and Major Ward Webb.

The Carline family of Prairieville donated hundreds of teddy bears to the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday, Jan. 21 in honor of their daughter Claire Carline, often called “Claire Bear,” who was killed in a car accident in early December.

Claire and her two sisters were traveling to school together when a Reserve man, suspected of being under the influence, slammed head-on into the girls’ car while trying to swerve around traffic in his lane.

Claire was pronounced dead on the scene and her two sisters suffered multiple injuries.

In the aftermath of the tragedy, the family asked friends to donate teddy bears instead of flowers in honor of Claire who loved teddy bears. The family received over 1,700 teddy bears and was overjoyed by the response from the community.

Troy and Lisa Carline met with Sheriff Jeff Wiley and expressed that they wanted to spread Claire’s love with others through her love of teddy bears. The Carline’s said that deputies could offer children a little bit of comfort during those sad and scary times that children some time have to face.

“It is our profession to investigate acts of violence, but it is also our job to make sure we bring comfort to children in those difficult times,” said Sheriff Wiley.  “By handing out these teddy bears to those in need, it will add comfort to those who may have been abused, or scared of the unknowing.  Sometimes for children, not only hugging a teddy bear brings comfort in those complex times but conveys love and warmth,” he added.

APSO would like to thank everyone who donated a teddy bear to the Carline family and also thank the Carline family for considering the APSO family to carry on Claire’s love of teddy bears.