It is expected that 965 officers from over 97 agencies will carry the “Flame of Hope” throughout 35 counties in Kansas as they travel to the annual Special Olympics Summer Games held in Wichita.
Locally, law enforcement officers will join Special Olympics athletes and supporters on Wednesday, June 3. Runners will start at 11 a.m. at Brit Spaugh Park, 2123 Main Street, and end at the Barton County Courthouse, 1400 Main. Officers from Great Bend Police Department and Barton County Sheriff’s Office will run the half-mile route.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run is a series of statewide runs which will travel approximately 1,500 miles throughout the state. Law Enforcement Officers, along with Shawn Bengtson of Topeka, Most Inspirational Athlete of 2014, will light the cauldron to officially open the Summer Games in front of over 3,000 athletes, coaches and fans of Special Olympics on Friday.
Last week, 33 employees from the Larned Juvenile Correctional Facility and Larned Correctional Mental Health Facility carried the “Flame of Hope” from Larned to Great Bend.
Detective Heather Smith at the GBPD said that this leg of the torch run ends in Great Bend, but local officers are joining the effort to raise funds to support Special Olympics Kansas.
Individuals can support the Torch Run by making a secure donation online at www.kansastorchrun.org, or by purchasing a T-shirt for $20 at the GBPD, 793-4120, or contact Detective Smith by calling 620-786-0562.