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Mattel donates Hot Wheels toys to N.Y. sheriff’s office to help carry on legacy of fallen deputy

Sergeant Thomas Sanfratello, who was an avid collector of Hot Wheels cars, would givethe cars to children who visited the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office station

'To help kids deal with tough times': How Hot Wheels will help carry on the legacy of fallen sergeant

“He was not only my uncle, but my best friend, my partner,” said Diehl. “He was the kid that never grew up.”

WKBW TV

By Joanna Putman
Police1

GENESEE COUNTY, N.Y. — The legacy of fallen Genesee County Sheriff’s Sergeant Thomas Sanfratello, who died in the line of duty earlier this year, is being carried on through a heartfelt gesture involving Hot Wheels toy cars, WKBW reported.

Deputy Rachel Diehl, Sergeant Sanfratello’s niece, highlighted her uncle’s deep connection with the community and his passion for collecting Hot Wheels, according to the report. He was known for sharing his diecast cars with children visiting the sheriff’s office.

“He was not only my uncle, but my best friend, my partner,” said Diehl. “He was the kid that never grew up.”

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WKBW TV

To honor Sanfratello, Mattel, Inc., the manufacturer of Hot Wheels, donated four cases of the toy cars to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, according to the report. The donation amounted to 288 Hot Wheels cars.

The donated Hot Wheels cars are now being distributed to various community agencies across Genesee County, according to the report. The aim is to continue Sergeant Sanfratello’s legacy by bringing joy to children in his name.

“It feels so good because we don’t want him to be forgotten,” Diehl said. “He will always be with us one way or another, even if it’s just in a Hot Wheels car.

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