8th MPs promote hope, raise awareness in Torch Run

| June 11, 2010 | 0 Comments

Capt. Shea A. Asis
8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command

FORT DERUSSY — Members of the 8th Military Police Brigade participated in the Troy Barboza Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics, here, recently. 

Second only to the Honolulu Police Department, the Watchdog Brigade raised more than $10,000.  

The event was organized by HPD to build awareness and raise money for Hawaii Special Olympics.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics started 25 years ago in Wichita, Kansas, when the police chief, there, saw a need to raise funds for Special Olympics. 

His idea was to have local law enforcement run with a torch in intrastate relays that converged at their local Summer Games, therefore building a positive relationship with communities, the police and Special Olympics.

In Honolulu, the Torch Run is named in honor of fallen HPD Officer Troy Barboza, who spent countless hours volunteering with Special Olympics.  

“Where else are you able to run through downtown Waikiki, at night, with a whole bunch of people cheering you on and shaking your hand?” asked Master Sgt. James Meyers, 8th MP Bde. senior career counselor. 

Meyers is a three-time runner of the event, and said, “It was a good event, for a good cause, and a lot of people showed up.”

The route took the runners from Fort DeRussy through Waikiki and finally ended at the Les Murakami Baseball Stadium, where Special Olympics officially opened the Summer Games. 

Crowds in the packed stadium cheered as the brigade and Special Olympics athletes ran around the field. The HPD chief of police lit the torch, which signifies good sportsmanship and the opening of the games.  

Deployed Soldiers from the 558th Military Police Company simultaneously supported the event from Iraq, and they wore their Torch Run T-shirts while running the same distance as their counterparts in Honolulu.  

“The 8th Military Police Brigade looks forward to continuing its tradition of running the event again next year and for years to come,” said Meyers.

Special Olympics shows the community the true meaning of sportsmanship and a joy towards life. The program reaffirms the belief that — with hope, love and dedication — any individual can see and realize achievement and self-worth, said Myers.

Category: Community

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