20th Annual Police Memorial Bike Ride visits Fort Wayne as riders circle the Hoosier State

("Police Revolving Lights" by Reynermedia, CC BY 2. 0)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): Motorists in Adams, Allen, DeKalb and Steuben County may have noticed a group of cyclists with a police escort on Wednesday Morning. The group, known as Cops Cycling for Survivors traveled through Fort Wayne and visited the local Law Enforcement and Firefighters Memorial before continuing on to Angola.

Monday, July 12, 2021 marked the start of the 20th annual Cops Cycling for Survivors bicycle ride around Indiana. The ride pays respect to Indiana’s fallen law enforcement heroes and let’s their survivors know they and their loved ones are not forgotten. The motto of Cops Cycling for Survivors is, “Riding to Remember,” and each year the group works to honor officers killed in the line of duty throughout Indiana’s history.

A departure ceremony was  held at 8:00 a.m. EDT at the Police and Fire Fighters Memorial on the capital grounds in downtown Indianapolis. Cyclists departed shortly after comments by Spencer Moore, retired IMPD lieutenant and father of fallen IMPD Officer David Moore, killed in the line of duty in 2011.

While Cops Cycling for Survivors honors all Indiana’s line of duty death officers, this year’s ride pays special tribute to those officers who died in 2020: Officer Kenneth Lester, Richmond Police Department, End of Watch February 10, 2020; Officer Breann Leath, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, End of Watch April 9, 2020; and, Sergeant Te’Juan Johnson, Charlestown Police Department, End of Watch December 2, 2020. Since Indiana’s 2019 line of duty deaths could not be properly honored due to the COVID pandemic in 2020, special honors are also given to Chief David Hewitt, Rising Sun Police Department, End of Watch February 13, 2019 and Trooper Peter “Bo” Stephan, Indiana State Police, End of Watch October 11, 2019.

The Cops Cycling for Survivors annual bike ride consists of active and retired police officers, law enforcement survivors, law enforcement family members and friends of law enforcement riding their bicycles around the perimeter of Indiana to raise funds and awareness of the sacrifices made by Hoosier law enforcement families across Indiana. Funds raised from this event are used to perpetuate the memories of officers killed in the line-of-duty and to aid surviving family members and co-workers of officers killed in the line-of-duty.

Previously raised funds have been directly donated to foundations, scholarships and camps that have been started in memory of fallen officers or by Indiana survivors in honor of their fallen heroes. In addition, Project Blue Light at the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy has been supported.

The ride is scheduled to conclude the afternoon of Saturday, July 24, 2021, at Crown Hill Cemetery, Heroes of Public Safety Section. The closing ceremony will begin at 2:00pm. Jerry Baker, retired IUPUI Police and father of fallen Marion County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Jason Baker, killed in the line of duty in 2001, will provide the closing message. All are welcome to attend.

The general route of the ride is as follows:

Day 1, Monday, July 12 – Indianapolis to Richmond

Day 2, Tuesday, July 13 – Richmond to Bluffton

Day 3, Wednesday, July 14 – Bluffton to Angola

Day 4, Thursday, July 15 – Angola to South Bend

Day 5, Friday, July 16 – South Bend to Merrillville

Day 6, Saturday, July 17 – Merrillville to Kentland

Day 7, Sunday, July 18 – Kentland to Terre Haute

Day 8, Monday, July 19 – Terre Haute to Princeton

Day 9, Tuesday, July 20 – Princeton to Huntingburg

Day 10, Wednesday, July 21 – Huntingburg to Jeffersonville

Day 11, Thursday, July 22 – Jeffersonville to Madison

Day 12, Friday, July 23 – Madison to Bloomington

Day 13, Saturday, July 24 – Bloomington to Indianapolis

Additional information on specific locations of meals and overnights can be found by clicking on the Calendar tab of the website. Click view calendar and the month of July at http://www.copscycling4survivors.org/events.php.

To track the ride’s progress, stops, and activities, please like and follow them on the Cops Cycling for Survivors Foundation Facebook page (Cops Cycling for Survivors). For more information about the organization, donations made, or this year’s ride, visit the website: http://www.copscycling4survivors.org/ .

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