(RAPID CITY, SD) – Rush defenseman Riley Weselowski has been around the community all summer long, whether it has been coaching hockey, performing music, or helping others locally. Yesterday, he participated in event that will be a mainstay of the Rapid City community for many years to come: he rode in the 1st Annual Blue and Chrome Law Enforcement Memorial Celebration, honoring the 105 officers across the country that died in the line of duty.
“I’ve been riding motorcycles for a few years now, and when Dave Davis, a corporate sponsor of the Rush, asked me to join I gave him a resounding yes,” said Weselowski of his participation in the event. “It was my first group bike ride, and it was great not only to get out and ride with these people, but also to help nationally pay tribute to officers and community servicemen and women that have lost their lives in the line of duty.”
The Blue and Chrome Law Enforcement Memorial Celebration started and ended at Rushmore Plaza Civic Center; a 75 mile ride that took participants all throughout the landscape of the Black Hills. Before the ride took place, an honor song was performed to provide the riders with a blessing of safety before their journey. Outside of the Civic Center was a memorial walk laced with the biographies of officers and community servicemen and women, including K-9’s, that have given their local communities all over the United State the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. Following the conclusion of the ride, which lasted from 1 PM to 4 PM, there was a free concert with dinner provided, as well as giveaways and a scavenger hunt.
“The purpose of the event is to nationally recognize and honor officers that have lost their lives in the line of duty,” said School Resources Officer Ryan Phillips, who also serves as the President of Lodge #2 for the Fraternal Order of Police in the area. “Nationally speaking, there is only one other event (in Washington D.C.) that honors fallen policemen nationally, so we’re very proud of the effort we put into this year’s event. This is the inaugural ride and had 75 participants. We would love to see that number double for next year.
“Go walk the memorial path, and you’ll see exactly why this event means so much to all involved,” said Dave Davis, Rush corporate sponsor, on his participation in the event. “To be a part of this and to honor officers who gave it all for us is outstanding. This is just the beginning. We plan on running this event every year, and I cannot wait to see what is in store for this occasion as the years go by. With Rapid City being only one of two events nationally recognizing fallen officers, I consider it an immense honor to be a part of this great community.”
Weselowski added: “It really puts life into perspective to see the stories of these officers and the celebration of their lives. There is a limitless amount of gratitude we can give these men and women that have given up their lives to serve their community, as well as those still living and serving with their memories fresh in their minds. I will gladly do this event again and help make sure that it grows for next year.”
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