(WTNH) — The second leg of the 35th Annual Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Connecticut brought a “Flame of Hope” through the state Thursday.
The Torch Run aims to promote awareness of Special Olympics, support for the organization’s year-round sports and health programs and inspire inclusion for people of all abilities across the state.
“It truly helps everybody in the community know that the athletes are more than just someone who has special needs. They’re people like you and I and they want to get out there and show what they can do,” said Laurie-Jean Hannon, who retired from Special Olympics.
More than 1,500 law enforcement officers are expected to participate in the event that runs until Friday. Officers from municipal departments, correction facilities, military police and other areas will run through their town and pass the Torch with its “Flame of Hope” at each town line.
The event also aims to raise funds to benefit Special Olympics.
“We usually do a tip a cop at the Doody’s restaurant on Foxon Road. We do some coin drops at Dunkin’ Donuts, people dump their change in the buckets,” said Sgt. Brian Hannon of the North Branford Police Department.
The run will end with the traditional Final Leg that will take place during the Opening Ceremony for the Special Olympics Connecticut Summer Sports Series at Fairfield University on Friday.
All are invited to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the Torch Run and support Special Olympics athletes by participating in the Champions Challenge 5K Run/Walk. To see photos and videos from the event, follow Special Olympics Connecticut and the Connecticut Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
See the list below for links to each day’s schedule:
DAY TWO – Thursday, June 17
DAY THREE – Friday, June 18
FINAL LEG – at Fairfield University