West Chicago, Illinois: May 30, 2017 - The Flame of Hope will be making its’ way from northern Illinois to Normal, Illinois for the Special Olympics Summer Games. The West Chicago Police Department will join other law enforcement organizations across the state and participate in the 31st Annual Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Illinois on Sunday, June 4, 2017. The starting designation for the West Chicago leg of the run is City Hall, 475 Main Street, and runners and walkers will meet at 7:45 a.m. The 1.2 mile local route continues over the A. Eugene Rennels Bridge to Conde Street, east to Joliet, south to Roosevelt Road, finishing at the La Chiquita parking lot.
Those who would like to run the complete route throughout DuPage County, will be transported by bus to the next town to begin the next leg of the Flame’s journey, and so on. In all, a runner who chooses this option will complete roughly 13.6 miles during the course of the day. The run will end at the DuPage County Animal Shelter where a picnic will be held for all runners and support personnel participating in this event.
Run participants are asked to donate $10, which will provide them with a 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run t-shirt that is required to run with the Torch. This year’s theme is “Guardians of the Flame”.
Statewide, over 3,000 officers, representing every branch of law enforcement, carry the Flame of Hope nearly 1,600 miles. They cover 23 different routes throughout different communities before reaching the final destination, which is the Hancock Stadium at Illinois State University in Normal. Opening Ceremonies, of the Special Olympic Summer Games are Thursday, June 9, 2017.
Over the past 31 years, the Run has raised more than $43 million. Funds ensure that neither the athletes nor their families will be charged for participation in Special Olympics. Without the support of individuals or organizations, many would not have the means to pay for the housing and transportation needed to compete. Those wishing to contribute should make checks payable to Law Enforcement Torch Run, and either drop it off in person or by mail to: West Chicago Police Department, 325 Spencer Street, West Chicago, IL 60185.
Cop on a Roof Top Results
The Torch Run follows the Cop on a Roof Top fundraiser for Special Olympics Illinois which took place locally at four West Chicago Dunkin Donut locations on May 19, 2017. Although the police officers could not fundraise from on top of the roof due to heavy rains, they persisted by fundraising on the ground and in the store. Detective Robbie Peterson, who has been the liaison with Special Olympics and the Illinois Torch run for seven years, collected money outside in the rain to help receive as many donations as possible.
“I knew I needed to get involved. It affects so many families and it helps so many kids. I think it's a great thing to support and be a part of," Peterson said.
Detective Peterson and the West Chicago Police officers who participated throughout the day, raised a total of $4,575, surpassing their goal of $4,000.
For more information about Special Olympics Illinois, visit https://www.soill.org/.