Be a Fan of Inspiration ...

"When I first started playing two years ago, I wasn't that good," Bowers said. "I am better at the game now because I practice all the time."

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Be a Fan of Inclusion ...

Sanders found a new meaning to life when he joined Special Olympics. He said that being a part of this is keeping him off the streets and it's something to look forward to because he made new friends.

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Be a Fan of Sport ...

Martinez, who is from Sullivan County and is coached by Melissa Ebeling, believes that the Special Olympics has helped him stay motivated as well keeping positive.

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Who Are The Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR)


What is the Law Enforcement Torch Run?
The Law Enforcement Torch Run to benefit Special Olympics it is the largest grassroots fundraising and public awareness vehicle for the movement across the globe!  More than 85,000 officers from 35 countries carried the "Flame of Hope" across their communities and into their local games and competitions last year! Internationally in 2012, LETR raised more than $42.1 million for Special Olympics, including over $1 million right here in New York! 

New York Torch Run
For over 25 years, thousands of law enforcement officers have carried the Flame of Hope through their towns, villages, and cities signifying the unique relationship between the athletes of Special Olympics NY and the Law Enforcement community. 

Nearly 2,000 officers representing more than 200 agencies across the state participated in just torch run alone… that’s not counting the thousands more that take part in the other signature Law Enforcement fundraisers across the state.

Since its inception, more than $6.5 million has been raised through LETR fundraisers in New York providing training, venues, equipment, uniforms and transportation for hundreds of thousands of Special Olympic New York Athletes!

How it Works
Officers carry the torch across the state, from Long Island to Buffalo, Plattsburgh to Binghamton, to bring the Torch into Opening Ceremonies of our State Summer Games each year, stopping at Regional competitions all along the way.  Officers also hand out awards to our athletes at these State Games as well as at Regional and local competitions.

In addition to the Torch Runs, there are many special events that take place throughout the year to raise funds and awareness for the athletes of Special Olympics New York. These events involve literally thousands of law enforcement officers who volunteer their time to plan and organize the Polar Plunge Series, Applebee's Law & Orders, Cops on Top, Over the Edge, Fire Truck Pulls, Golf Outings and a variety of other adventures throughout New York State.

The History
The Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics began in 1981 when Wichita, Kansas Police Chief Richard LaMunyon saw an urgent need to raise funds for and increase awareness of Special Olympics.  The idea for the Torch Run was to provide local law enforcement officers with an opportunity to volunteer with Special Olympics in the communities where the officers lived and worked. After three years of successful runs in Kansas, Chief LaMunyon presented his idea to the International Association of Chiefs of Police, which endorsed Special Olympics as its official charity through the Torch Run. Today, all 50 states and over 40 countries have their own versions of the Torch Run and now Law Enforcement Torch Run events have created an umbrella to include Polar Plunge, Law and Orders, Cops on Top, Over the Edge and many many more!