A group of tired runners made their way into Riverfront Green Park in Peekskill Wednesday for the Westchester County portion of the Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run.
It wasn’t the easiest feat, but it was all in a days for work for the members from the Peekskill police department who participated.
“Other than my breathing, there was nothing difficult about this,” said Carl DeMarco, president of the Peekskill’s Police Benevolent Association and one of the runner. “The logistics for this has been planned out for years. Other than that, it’s just enjoying the run a on a nice day like this and coming down here and celebrating.”
According to the Special Olympics website, the purpose of the run "is to increase awareness and raise funds for the Special Olympics movement." In 2011, the run reportedly raised $42.1 million.
Law Enforcement officials started the run in Yonkers, with officers carrying the torch in their jurisdiction and carrying it to the next locality.
Peekskill had six police officers who took turns carrying the torch on the last the run. Each county in the state is expected to have a similar run until Special Olympics torch makes its way to Buffalo, where the Summer Games are scheduled to start on June 14.
Peekskill police Chief Eric Johansen said the Westchester County leg of the torch run has ended in Peekskill for at least 20 years.
DeMarco said it's easy finding officers to participate each year.“We know it’s for a good cause and there’s no greater cause than that to raise money for,” DeMarco said. “It’s easy getting people to sign up.”