The mission of the Vermont Law Enforcement Torch Run is to raise funds and awareness for Special Olympics Vermont statewide. We carry the Torch representing the Flame of Hope and dedicate ourselves to helping Special Olympics throughout the state.
History of Law Enforcement Torch Run
The Law Enforcement Torch Run began in 1981 when Wichita, Kansas Police Chief Richard LaMunyon conceived the Torch Run as a way to involve local law enforcement personnel in the community and to support Special Olympics Kansas. LaMunyon presented the program to the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and so it began. With IACP’s enthusiastic support and leadership, as well as the involvement of all facets of the law enforcement community – sheriff’s associations, police unions, state, county, municipal, military and federal law enforcement, and corrections officers – the Torch Run is now active in countries around the world.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run is Special Olympics’ largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness campaign, raising $410 million around the world since its inception.
The Vermont LETR movement began in 1984 and includes representatives from law enforcement and public safety departments and agencies around the state. In 2014, the Vermont LETR movement raised more than $70,000 to support Special Olympics Vermont athletes.
The annual Torch Run is a series of four relay-style running events, beginning in each corner of the state. Local law enforcement and public safety, along with local program athletes, coordinators, and coaches, run the “Flame of Hope” through their towns and cities to raise awareness of Special Olympics and athletes with intellectual disabilities. The Final Leg of the 2015 Torch Run will take place on Friday, May 29th. Runners will convene at the Windjammer in South Burlington for a BBQ before running the Torch into the opening ceremonies of the 2015 Summer Games at UVM.
Special Olympics athletes and law enforcement/public safety agencies team up with Irving/Circle K fuel stations “To Serve and Protect Day”. Athletes and officers pump gas, wash windshields and collect donations from customers to support their local Special Olympics programs.
Vermont’s Law Enforcement Torch Run Executive Council invites you for a fun day of golf at the Woodstock Country Club, named one of the world’s “top 100 golf resorts” by Golf Magazine.
Run with the Cops 5K – August 28, 2015
Run from the Cops is a partnership with the Law Enforcement Torch Run, supported by the Williston Police Department. Runners of all ages and abilities welcome. 2015 date TBD (August)
Law enforcement join forces with a local restaurant to collect “tips”, as they worked alongside wait staff, to raise money for SOVT. Since the first Tip-A-Cop, hundreds of similar events have sprung up across the country to benefit Special Olympics programs across the U.S. Vermont currently hosts 3 Tip-A-Cop events: Mother’s Day and Father’s Day at JP’s Restaurant in Essex, and the Berlin Applebee’s in September.
Since 2001, Dream Ride has been bringing people together on the open road to celebrate the achievements of Special Olympics athletes. Each year thousands of motorcycle and car enthusiasts rev up their engines to honor this worthy cause. Motorcycle and car enthusiasts from 12 States and 2 Countries converge on The Farmington Club in Farmington, CT for a weekend of fun. Learn more at www.DeamRide.org
Medal Draping at SOVT Competitions
Special Olympics Vermont athletes participate in 18 competitions in 12 different sports throughout the year. Special Olympics Inc. (SOI) mandates in the general rules that all awards be presented by uniformed law enforcement personnel. Upcoming competitions are listed on the SOVT calendar.
For more information LETR and to get involved, please contact:
Chief Jack Harris, Lyndonville PD. Vermont LETR Executive Council Co-Chair Jack.Harris@state.vt.us
Justin Huizenga, Williston PD. Vermont LETR Executive Council Co-Chair Justin.Huizenga@state.vt.us
Liza Reed, Special Olympics Vermont. Vermont LETR Liaison email@example.com
View all current Executive Council members here.