BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Last year, 163 police officers died in the line of duty nationwide.
As Mike Schuh reports, departments from all over are riding into Washington, D.C. this weekend, raising money for the fallen along the way.
Police escorting police. With air cover overhead, 70 police cyclists stop at Baltimore’s police memorial.
You may remember the names of Officer William Torbit or Trooper Wesley Brown. But those on two wheels know their names well, and honor them with a ride that began on Wednesday in Pennsylvania.
Flight paramedic Cricket Beck is riding for her friends who died when Trooper 2 crashed.
“It’s been a tough road, but it’s how we work through the grief and let the families know that we still care,” First Sergeant Beck said.
Torbit’s family is here to see a $1,000 donation made in his name to the cyclists supporting the National Law Enforcement Memorial in D.C.
This group is but one of many. More than 1,500 are converging on Washington, D.C. this weekend from all over the country. To ride, each raised more than $1,000, but that’s not the hardest part.
“You ride for those who’ve died in the line of duty. And just when you think you’re pedaling up that hill and you think you can’t do it any more, you dig deep that you’re riding for Sgt. Bruce Prothero, Lt. Mike Howe– the fallen officers,” Sgt. Vickie Warehime of the Baltimore County Police Department said.
Such respect is in turn– along this route– given much respect.
Mike Gary saluted the officers as they rode through Catonsville.
“They don’t know if they’re coming home for dinner every night. If I can pass on a little respect, that’s good,” Gary said.
From here they’re on to Howard County before going to D.C. where there is a national event planned.
Those police cyclists have raised more than $10 million to enhance the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.