Law Enforcement Torch Run is the largest grass-roots fund-raiser and public awareness vehicle for Special Olympics in the world. In 2012, the international program raised more than $46 million US to support Special Olympics programs; the total raised since the Torch Run’s inception in 1981 is $400 million US. More than 85,000 law enforcement officers from thousands of agencies have aligned themselves with this worthwhile cause.
In Alberta, Law Enforcement Torch Run has been active since the late 1980s. In recent years it has been successful in raising more than $400,000 annually for Special Olympics, and over $620,000 in 2017.
What started in Wichita, Kansas in 1981 as a flicker of hope for Special Olympics has now become a roaring flame of stability for Special Olympics athletes worldwide because of a vision seen through the eyes of a young police chief, Richard LaMunyon. Chief LaMunyon wanted to support Special Olympics within his community and he quickly saw that the lessons learned by the Special Olympics athletes on the field easily transferred into their daily lives. The training and competition allowed individuals to focus on their ability, not their disability.
He proposed the idea of police officers participating in a Torch Run supporting Special Olympics and raising funds from fellow officers, private individuals and the business community. Through this event the torch has become the “Flame of Hope” and the men and women within the Law Enforcement community the “Guardians of the Flame”.
The mission of the Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) for Special Olympics is to raise awareness and funds for the Special Olympics movement worldwide.
The mission of Special Olympics Alberta is to enrich the lives of Albertans with intellectual disabilities through sport.
Who Is Involved in Law Enforcement Torch Run?
Law enforcement officers from all across Canada and the United States as well as 40 countries around the globe carry the Flame of Hope in honor of the Special Olympics athletes around the world.
The Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Alberta program is represented by the Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Alberta Sheriffs, Alberta Corrections, RCMP, Medicine Hat Police, Lethbridge Police Service, Canadian Pacific Railway Police, Canadian National Railway Police, Calgary Transit Public Safety and Enforcement Section, Alberta Community Peace Officers Association, Tsuu T'ina Police, Lacombe Police Service and Camrose Police Service.
About Special Olympics
Special Olympics Alberta is committed to enriching the lives of Albertans with an intellectual disability through sport. They provide athletes, of all ages and abilities, the opportunity to realize their full athletic potential, with appropriate training, coaching and competitions, to develop life skills, a healthy body, and self-esteem.
How can I get involved?