by Anneli Rufus
This summer, the Berkeley Police Department is keeping up its tradition of supporting the Special Olympics of Northern California.
On June 23, members of the BPD officers and parking enforcement officers participated in one of SONC's fundraising events: They took turns carrying the "Torch of Hope torch 2.2 miles on San Pablo Avenue from Ashby Avenue in Berkeley to the City of Albany border.
Upon arriving in Albany, the BPD group learned that Albany PD had to reluctantly cancel their participation due to other matters, reported BPD spokesperson Sgt. Mary Kusmiss.
"When the BPD group heard this news, someone in the group yelled, 'Let’s go to El Cerrito!' There were cheers and the group continued to carry the “Torch of Hope to the City of El Cerrito Police Department. The BPD team members raised over $5,500 for the torch run event."
This Friday and Saturday, Special Olympics will launch a first-ever fundraiser called “Over The Edge.”
"It is limited to the first hundred volunteers, who each must raise at least $1,000," Kusmiss explained. "BPD Officer Tim Kaplan #109 heard about it while volunteering at the Special Olympics Summer Games in Davis, CA. Tim decided to do the 38 story rappel of the San Francisco Hyatt in honor of Special Olympians. Tim has already raised $1,880."
They're busy, but they've still got time and heart enough for good causes.