MADISON, NJ -  Madison police and borough officials were on hand yesterday to cheer on the Police Unity Tour coming through Madison at approx. 9:45am.  

The four-day Police Unity Tour is commemorating its 21th anniversary May 9-12, with police from around the country converging on the nation’s capital to pay tribute to the slain officers and the families left behind.

The fifth day, May 13th, will be filled by a candlelight vigil and ceremonies at the National Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial and Museum.

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The 2,000 riders nationwide will help to heighten awareness of the dangers and hazards faced by law enforcement officers, honor those who have died in the line of duty and raise funds for the National Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial and Museum.

By the end of Day Two, the cyclists will reach Philadelphia; Day 3, May 11, the destination is Baltimore.  They will arrive in Washington on May 12, Day 4 and converge at RFK Stadium before riding to the police memorial.

The ceremony at the law enforcement memorial in Washington is a tribute to the families of officers killed in the line of duty.

They are escorted to their seats one-by-one as the officers salute them. The name of each fallen officer is read off.

The Police Unity Tour was organized by Officer Patrick P. Montuore of the Florham Park Police Department in May, 1997.

Since then, the annual event has raised over $20 million.

Last year the police cyclists raised $2.5 million.

-         In late 2005, the Police Unity Tour pledged $5 Million in support of the National Law Enforcement Museum.

-         Having completed the $5 Million commitment to the Museum in 2009 the Police Unity Tour dedicated the 2010 ride to the restoration of the walls of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. The $1.1 million restoration project included the re-engraving, coating and sealing of the 18,983 names on the memorial as well as the cleaning of the walls and other memorial improvements.

-         In 2011 the Police Unity Tour became the official sponsor of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s “Officer of the Month Program.” Officers of the Month are honored at a special awards luncheon each May in Washington, DC during National Police Week, and they are featured in the Memorial Fund’s annual calendar. The Police Unity Tour is also proud to sponsor the NLEOMF’s “Recently Fallen Alerts.”