Indiana State Trooper Rich Crawford says, "these officers put their life on the line everyday".
It's a sad reality for all in law enforcement. As this bicycle team made up of Indiana officers and survivors know well. The reality is triggered even more by the recent deaths of three Indiana Officers.
"It's just tragic that we lost these officers in such a short period of time", Trooper Crawford added.
Every year a 13 day tour through the Hoosier state is completed to create awareness and honor the fallen.
"Unfortunately we lose officers on occasion and it's important that we remember those families that are left behind" he adds.
Families like that of officer Michael Deno shot and killed in the line of duty.
Everyday his widow, Cindy Walker remembers the devastating loss.
"It's like getting kicked in the gut everyday", Walker says. "I was 24 years old, your're not supposed to be a widow at 24".
She and the rest of deno's family have stayed strong through the 14 years since his death with the support of organizations like Cops Cycling For Survivors.
"The tears still flow even after 10, 15 years. Some of these families, the hurt is still there" Trooper Crawford says. "They make us realize that they will not be forgotten and as a family we will not be forgotten" adds Walker.
New bonds are made with those who have also experienced such tragedy.
"I've gotten to know their families also as they've grown to know mine", she says.
"It's a healing process for them, plus its a healing process these riders that participate in this ride" , Trooper Crawford added.
The non-profit organizaton raises funds for the emotional and financial needs of the families of fallen officers. See the link to learn more about Cops Cycling For Survivors.
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