Special Olympics Torch Passes through AJ

Law enforcement raises money for AZ Special Olympics Athletes

By Bill Van Nimwegen

Apache Junction Police Department (AJPD), along with several law enforcement agencies throughout southern Arizona, helped pass the torch last Thursday at the 2019 Law Enforcement Torch Run.

Temperatures were in the mid-80s by the time the run made it into downtown Apache Junction around 12:45 p.m. This leg of the run was well attended by well-wishers and families of the participants.

AJPD officers and staff ran the torch from Gold Canyon to Apache Junction along Old West Highway to Apache Trail, and then to Signal Butte in Mesa, where it was handed off to Mesa Police.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run raises money for Special Olympians through a series of intra-state and intra-nation runs in the U.S. and around the world. It is the largest fundraising event of the Special Olympics. Contributions from individuals and businesses help raise support for incredible Special Olympics athletes.

AJPD Chief Thomas Kelly said that “The Torch Run is an opportunity for law enforcement agencies across the state to support a very important cause. Not only does the Torch Run promote positive physical activity and camaraderie within the department, it also provides an opportunity for our local youth to interact with law enforcement.”

The Torch Run is a year-round campaign to raise awareness and funds for Special Olympics Arizona. The Law Enforcement Torch Run puts on statewide events such as tip-a-cop, cop on top of doughnut shops, golf tournaments, polar plunges, and inmate fundraising—just to name a few!

Photo above: On Thursday, May 2, Pinal County Sheriffs passed the Special Olympics Arizona Law Enforcement Torch Run standard to Apache Junction Police and staff participants in Gold Canyon. AJPD continued the run to Apache Junction, then along Apache Trail to Mesa, where it was passed to Mesa Police. Photo courtesy of City of AJ

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