MIAMI (WSVN) - South Florida law enforcement officers are taking part in the Peace Officer Memorial Bike Ride.
The group of 20 officers left Bayfront Park and headed to Naples early Friday morning after two months of training.
Peace Officers Memorial Month pays tribute to “peace officers” who have passed away or were disabled in the line of duty.
Miami Police Officer Joseph McCrink is leading a team of fellow police officers on a 111-mile bike ride to raise funds in honor of Miami Police Officer Aubrey Johnson who passed away last year.
“When it happened, we had so much support,” said Deloris Johnson, Johnson’s mother. “Everybody would come by the house and talk to us and try to give us strength because it’s still hard. I don’t know how I’m talking to you right now. I just got some strength from somewhere, but everyday I cry. Everyday. It’s just hard. They’ve been there for us.”
The 28-year-old died in October, two weeks after he was injured chasing a suspect on foot in Miami. He called his parents to let them know something was wrong just before passing away, but by the time they arrived, it was too late.
“He was always wanting to help and just loving and so funny,” said Deloris.
Officers will finish the 111-mile bike ride in one day.
McCrink made sure the message of unity was established to the officers.
“You guys have to carry this torch on,” said McCrink. “You guys have to get some fundraisers together. You guys have to teach the younger officers, ‘Hey, if we want the community to trust us, we have to trust each other.'”
The money raised will go to the Police Officers Assistance Trust.
They will also present Johnson’s family with a portrait upon their arrival to Naples Beach.
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