Police & Fire

Law Enforcement Officers Pass the Torch for Special Olympics New Jersey

0eac541b2c7f009a9eaf_IMG_7964.JPG
The Elizabeth Police team gets ready to past the torch. Credits: Fran Sullivan
84ddd97a403c75f6520c_CROPPED_IMG_7955.JPG
752db20661a0d866b4c9_CROPPED_IMG_7961__1_.JPG
0eac541b2c7f009a9eaf_IMG_7964.JPG

ELIZABETH, NJ – Law Enforcement Officers, including a team from Elizabeth Police, and Wakefern volunteers kicked off the weekend of the annual Special Olympics New Jersey (SONJ) Summer Games with a fundraising Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics.

The Elizabeth officers joined their colleagues in the Port Authority and US Customs and Border Protection at Wakefern’s facility in Division Street for the second leg of the statewide run that ends at the games on the campus of The College of New Jersey. More than 3,000 officers take to the streets of their communities, split up into 36 separate legs, and run to raise awareness for Special Olympics New Jersey.

“It builds camaraderie between us and other law enforcement,” explained Alexander Gonzalez, co-captain of the Elizabeth police team. “We were fortunate when the officer in charge retired and literately passed the torch to us.”

Sign Up for E-News

That torch is usually passed to recent graduates of the police academy. “It’s become a tradition,” explained John Londono, the other co-captain of the Elizabeth team, pointing to the team of whom many are recent grads. “We hope they come back next year on their own. It’s special to give back. We love to help and this is a good cause. It’s a big responsibility, but it is very fulfilling when you see where it is going.”

Port Authority Lieutenant Mike Sherwood knows how much work goes into a successful six-mile run. He has been organizing this leg for the last 13 years. “I got involved as a rookie and gave out medals. I ask if I could help in any way, and they said ‘sure.’”

Wakefern Corporation has been a corporate sponsor of the Special Olympics since its inception said Steve Hoptay, corporation’s vice president of loss prevention. “We became more involved with the Law Enforcement Torch Run about five or six years ago. It kick starts the weekend.”

Hoptay further explained that Wakefern and the officers were responsible for getting all the provisions to the games. Wakefern donates the lunches. “We will serve between 14,000 and 18,000 meals this weekend.”  

The Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics is a major fundraising activity for Special Olympics New Jersey, raising more than $3.7 million in 2016 for the athletes of Special Olympics New Jersey.

Each town hands off the torch at the town border to police officers from the neighboring town. Here’s a list of the teams participating in the second leg that ends in Hillsborough:    

Port Authority Police Dept.

Elizabeth PD and US Customs

Roselle PD

Roselle Park PD

Cranford PD

Garwood PD

Westfield PD

Union County PD

Scotch Plains PD

Fanwood PD

Plainfield PD

Dunellen PD

Middlesex PD

Boundbrook PD

Somerset County Prosecutor's Office

Somerset County Sheriff's Office

Somerville PD

Hillsborough Twp. PD.

 

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Springfield

Rahway Man Admits to Fatal Strangulation of Girlfriend

April 25, 2018

A Rahway resident has admitted to strangling his girlfriend to death in 2015, Union County First Assistant Prosecutor Albert Cernadas Jr. announced Wednesday.

Ignacio Ortiz Vasquez, 42, earlier this week pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree murder and second-degree endangering the welfare of a child in connection with the death of 27-year- old Yuri Cruz. The pleas were entered just days ...

Politics IS Government in Union County

April 22, 2018

After Bruce Patrson of Garwood was stopped from speaking at the Union County freeholder meeting of March 22 regarding the politics behind refusing to give the party line to a sitting freeholder I thought this brazen suppression of free speech could not go unanswered. A the the April 19 meeting I answered with these comments.

After ten years of following government in Union County I conclude ...

Travels Spotlight: New Brunswick Ciclovia opens 2018 Season

April 18, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK  – New Brunswick Ciclovia will open its 2018 season on Sunday, April 22 for another fun day of open streets and active living for all. 

Now in its fifth year, New Brunswick Ciclovia is a family-friendly event that emphasizes healthy living and community building by opening our streets and offering programming for all to enjoy. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., more ...

USEF Seeks Input From Members On Major Industry Challenges

April 26, 2018

LEXINGTON, Ky. – In response to repeated requests by its membership, the United States Equestrian Federation (US Equestrian) has formed two new task forces to conduct comprehensive assessments of both equine transaction transparency and the competition environment, including calendar management. These task forces will present their findings to the Board of Directors, including any policies ...

Upcoming Events

Fri, April 27, 8:00 PM

17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit

Open Mic Night

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_2d432cc950f356da2c6b_f60eae2b69ee186ab2c9_f5f3362648b4a25a99d4_screen_shot_2018-04-22_at_1.02.36_pm

Sat, April 28, 3:00 PM

Abraham Clark High School - Auditorium, Roselle

Roselle's First Circle of Sisters Expo Community ...

Sat, April 28, 7:00 PM

Hilton Garden Inn, Springfield Township

YP Honors: The Royal Ball 2018

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink Giving Back Other