KINGMAN - The Kingman Police Department joined a group of Special Olympians earlier this week as they went the distance during the 26th Annual Arizona Law Enforcement Torch Run.
Unlike last year, when the torch was lost in transit on its way to Kingman, participants ran from Centennial Park to the Powerhouse with the real thing Monday morning. Officers and volunteers from the department were joined by members of the Route 66 Special Olympics, Arise and students from the Kingman Academy of Learning Intermediate School.
From Kingman, the torch was relayed to officers with the Arizona Department of Public Safety, who passed it off to the Lake Havasu City Police Department and the Western Arizona Law Enforcement Training Academy for its journey to Parker and Yuma.
The torch will ultimately make its way to Mesa Community College for opening ceremonies of the Special Olympics Summer Games this Friday.
Cara Engstrom, head of delegation for the Route 66 Special Olympics, said her group will have 20 athletes who will caravan with their families to the games.
She said the torch run was a wonderful display of support by the officers, who raise money through special fundraisers all year long to help sponsor the athletes. Engstrom said the donations help cover all of the athletes' expenses.
"We're always looking for new athletes and volunteers," she said.
The Arizona Law Enforcement Torch Run has raised more than $6 million for the Special Olympics in the last two-dozen years.
The local leg of the torch run was coordinated by Kingman Police Officer Rochelle Silva Finney.
For more information or to make a donation, contact Silva at the Kingman Police station at (928) 753-2191, or Cara with Route 66 Special Olympics at (928) 303-0773.