THAWING YOUR HEART: Athens Police come to the rescue during storm

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ATHENS, Ala. (WHNT)-- Police in Athens came to the rescue Friday night into Saturday morning as drivers were stranded on the interstate and Highway 72.

While people in the Athens community opened their doors to help, officers drove people to safety.

A basketball team from Georgia was one of their biggest roadside rescues.

"We got a call that there were 50 to 100 people walking down [the interstate]," said Athens Police Chief Floyd Johnson. "We sent quite a few cars and were able to locate them... so we brought them [to a hotel.]"

Officers also assisted Central Church of Christ members, who opened up their building as a warming center.

"They helped a lot," said Chief Johnson. "We had a [warm] safe place we could take people quickly."

Officers helped deliver bedding church members bought, so people who were stranded there could sleep more comfortably.

In the morning Saturday, they took people back to their cars if they were still on the side of the road.

"It's really the good part about policing. It really is. It's good to go out and serve the public and really be there for them. And make a difference," said Johnson.

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