Kristi Bennet holds two very important titles; a mother to Collin, Loren, Austin, and Joseph, and respected police sergeant for the Texarkana, Arkansas Police Department. She is, in fact, a true hero. Kristi gave birth to Collin, who is now nine years old. Kristi says, “He is an unbelievable, smart, boy who is in the fourth grade at Genoa Elementary School. His favorite class is the Gifted and Talented class where he loves to work on projects and anything science related.” Kristi was blessed with three additional bonus children as well. “Loren has been a traveling missionary for over two years and is now settling into her new career with the Boy and Girls Club in the Dallas area. Austin, currently in the Navy as a corpsman, has spent time all over the world the last four years serving our county. Joseph, the marine, is currently working in administration for a hospital, obtaining his master’s degree this year, and residing his beautiful wife, Lily, who is in her final year of a rigorous physical therapy program. They have eight-year old Zoie, who is beautiful, a phenomenal baker, and a third-grade student at Redwater Elementary School.
As with many families in our area, experiencing this quarantine period has resulted in finding a new routine. “As a police officer, I do not get to stay home with Collin every day. I sure wish I was able to though. Collin, on the other hand, is a home body, so for him, he just loves it. He works on schoolwork, and thanks to Loren who is staying with us through this storm, she has made sure he has been successful on all this work! I try to step in and help, which I have discovered now, in the fourth week, is a bad idea. It is so hard! His teacher should make 356 million dollars, everyday! Seriously, all teachers are undervalued and underpaid,” she exclaims. “The extra time home though has been really nice to slow down and just be. We spend more time than ever now sitting on the porch, enjoying the spring flowers and sunshine, playing games after dark, and finding a movie on Disney+ before bed.”
Kristi has done well to raise Collin throughout the years, and it shows in Collin’s very giving and selfless attitude. Kristi recalls an event at Harvest Texarkana that scared her for a moment, only to later realize that her son was showing love to others. “Collin and I were at Harvest Texarkana to assist with packing boxes of food with our PRIDE Youth Leadership group from Arkansas High School when the pandemic had just begun. Channel 12 news was there doing a story on the food shortage asking people to step up for their community. I turned around to see Collin being interviewed by the news channel. At first, I was a little worried as to what he would say, so I ran over to try to intervene a nine-year-old from saying something expectedly silly. Other than telling Collin we were going to Harvest Texarkana, I didn’t expect that he understood seriousness of the situation. The news channel guy asked Collin on camera, ‘Why do you think this is a good way to spend your day out of school?’ Collin answered all on his own, ‘I am blessed with so much; I want to do something for others.’” What a proud mom moment for Kristi when she experienced her son speak these kind words to the reporter!
Collin, with the aid of Kristi’s mother, has given Kristi the most meaningful gift she has ever received in motherhood. She explains, “Recently, when Collin returned home from a week with my momma, he brought to me a small box that was very fancy. Inside that box contained small pieces of paper with a handwritten note on each one. His instructions were that every day, I open the box, and take out note one. Today’s informed me that I was in fact the best mom in the world.” Although this may seem like a small gift to many, it is very meaningful to Kristi; something she greatly appreciates.
Kristi has experienced a wonderful time raising Collin and enjoying her bonus children. “I work hard to make the very best life for me and my family. I try my best not to allow negativity to control or prevent the best that life has to offer. I am grateful to have a loving family whom I can count on to always have my back no matter what.” Certainly, this positive attitude can be attributed to the presence of her very own mother in Kristi’s life. “My mom is best person in the world. I am in awe of her patience and the love she shows all of us. I have never met more pure, selfless, soul who all of my life has only lived for others.”
Words from Collin:
My Mom is: my favorite
I really love it when my Mom: makes me laugh
My favorite thing I love to do with my Mom is: swing in the hammock outside and take naps
My mom always tells me: she loves me
I love my Mom because: she is sweet, honest, kind, playful