In July of 2023, the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office made an application for a drone donation through the National Public Safety Drone Donation Program. (NPS-DDP.org) Although the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office is outside of Indy Drone Rescue mission support area, NPS-DDP and Indy Drone Rescue partnered together for this drone donation. Indy Drone Rescue’s mission to support communities through drone search and rescue donations allows us to help support communities and organizations focused on those with special needs. Founders of Indy Drone Rescue, Steven and Lorie Graves have close ties to the Mid-Missouri community. Steven,
a University of Missouri alum, and wife Lorie met while working alongside local first responders. Steven and Lorie currently reside in Central Indiana but still have family in Mid-Missouri. Their son and grandson who both have been diagnosed with autism and have received therapy in the Mid-Missouri community makes this donation to Cooper County special to us. We feel with our previous drone donations to the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department and the Doolittle Rural Fire Protection District, donating to a community which supports organizations like SuperFinn Autism Foundation, this donation will be extremely beneficial to the overall community.
Because of this, the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office is receiving a thermal imaging drone donation from Indy Drone Rescue, CEO and Founder, Steven Graves. Indy Drone Rescue is a local Indiana nonprofit dedicated to supplying equipment and pilots to help locate at risk individuals who have become lost or may have run away. We help search for individuals, such as those who may have special needs or those on the autism spectrum. This thermal imaging drone donation and equipment provided to the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office including FAA Part 107 Pilot training donated by Pilot Institute, a Colorado Drone Charging Case and GPC Drone Hard Case, is over $4,000 in value. Drone lifesaving technology has proven to be a valuable asset to offices all over the United States and is sure to help save lives, property, and injury. This will be the 50th drone donation made by NPS-DDP.org and 5th donation with Indy Drone Rescue since the foundation was established.
Cooper County has a large Special Needs community; this often leads to runaway/missing adults and special needs children. A Sheriff’s Office deployed drone would be able to assist quickly and give boots on the ground the “eye in the sky.”, said Deputy Jordan Shikles with the Cooper County Sheriff’s Office.
The board of directors of the National Public Safety Drone Donation Program (NPS-DDP.org) is proud to have the support of Mr. Steven Graves and his foundation (Indy Drone Rescue). We are excited to have him as an active board member that shares the same vision to help put “eyes in the sky for every office in need”. Public safety offices nationally may apply to receive a UAV/drone and innovative hardware and software at no cost or obligation to the office with no strings attached.