This past June, Special Olympics Massachusetts celebrated their 10th year of the Cruiser Convoy, an event that goes hand in hand with The Law Enforcement Torch Run®. LETR is a year-round fundraising and awareness building program, designed to allow members of the law enforcement community the opportunity to support Special Olympics athletes who live, work and compete in their local communities. The Cruiser Convoy started here in Massachusetts and now takes place every June in conjunction with Summer Games. Law Enforcement officers from all over the state will start at one of three points, each one representing the north, south and west. As these convoys drive in, they all converge at Boston College Law School in Newton before continuing on to the Harvard Athletic Facilities in Allston. This is where we host our Summer Games, and as the Law Enforcement vehicles arrive, they create one final line of cars and blast their lights and sirens in recognition of the accomplishments of the athletes. Following the convoy, the officers award medals and ribbons to the participants in the Summer Games, traveling to the six different competition venues to share the joy and happiness following the competition. We are happy to be celebrating 10 years of officers coming together to support Special Olympics by joining the convoy, presenting medals, interacting with athletes and enjoying the Summer Games!
This year, there were over 180 cruisers in the convoy, raising over ten thousand dollars for Special Olympics Massachusetts!! Co-Directors of the Executive Council for MA LETR: Retired Attleboro Chief of Police, Rick Pierce and Middleton Chief of Police, Jim DiGianvittorio started the Cruiser Convoy in 2007 after attending the International Law Enforcement Torch Run Conference held in Oklahoma City, OK . At the conference they learned about an event called the “Truck Convoy to Benefit Special Olympics” which consisted of tractor trailer trucks convoying across the state raising funds and awareness for Special Olympics. From this event stemmed the idea of switching tractor trailer trucks with police cruisers, making an LETR Cruiser Convoy event where cruisers from all over the state could come together, raising funds and awareness for Special Olympics. The Massachusetts LETR Cruiser Convoy is the one and only cruiser convoy in the United States, and the number of cruisers has almost doubled from the first convoy in 2008 when there were 95 cruisers, to this year’s event which saw 180 cruisers. When asked why other police departments and volunteers should get involved with this event Rick Pierce stated “This event helps other police officers throughout the state to learn about Special Olympics and individuals with intellectual disabilities. The officers get an opportunity to interact with the athletes and their families at this event and they get the opportunity to present medals to the athletes. It also serves as a way for the officers to learn more about the LETR and offers them the opportunity to participate in other LETR fundraising events to benefit Special Olympics.” In both raising money and awareness for Special Olympic Massachusetts, we are happy to celebrate ten years of the Cruiser Convoy and challenge you to get involved!
If you are interested in getting involved, either as part of the convoy if you are in Law Enforcement or as a volunteer, please contact [email protected] or visit their website www.masstorchrun.org to find out more about this amazing event!