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The aroma of freshly baked pizza wafted through the AAA parking lot Thursday.

Destined for the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office, the 30 pizzas made by Tyler DeGroff of The Hen & Hound Wood-Fired Pizza were a gift of appreciation from Heaton Real Estate and its owner, Ellen Heaton.

“We need to find ways to reach out and be positive,” Heaton said. “There’s so much to be thankful for — first responders, nurses. There’s a lot of different people we want to say, ‘thank you,’ to; to make a gesture of appreciation.”

Chief Deputy Scott Hall was going to deliver the pizzas to the employees of the sheriff’s office; detention officers; and telecommunicators.

Heaton said she would like to reach out to police officers and firefighters as well. “This is a way to say ‘thank you’ to those on the frontlines.”

For Hall, the gesture was appreciated. “I think it’s an amazing gesture. It’s an amazing feeling when people come to help us. It’s an amazing feeling when you realize people appreciate what you do.”

DeGroff had been working the stove since he set up at AAA off Tenth Street.

He didn’t mind making the 30 pizzas. “They put their lives on the line. It’s no skin off my back to give back a little bit for what they do for us.”