Law Enforcement Technology

JUL 2015

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Page 36 of 63 July 2015 Law Enforcement Technology 37 Officers Memorial Fund. Fund-raising $2,000 in itself can be a daunting task. I did the usual posting on Facebook and asked friends and family to help out. While I am fortunate to have great friends and family who helped, that can only get you so far; it's up to you to get creative. I worked with a coworker to set up a fund-raising night with a local bar and restaurant that was willing to donate part of a night's profits to the cause. We also got local business and sports teams to donate merchandise and held a silent auction. Before you know it the tour is here. The ride from Portsmouth, Virginia to D.C. took three days and just over 250 miles. Unity Tour riders present a "Thank You" plaque to Target, one of the sponsors. Chapter 8 rode from Portsmouth, Va. to D.C. We completed the ride in three days and put on just over 250 miles. The journey starts when everyone gets to Portsmouth. Chapter 8 is com- prised mainly of folks from Florida, Texas, Arizona, Louisiana and Georgia, but also some from North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia. Most fly in; some drive up with their agencies—especially motors and sup- port. In order to just get the equipment we need to safely complete this journey like the motorcycles, trailers, coolers, tables, and everything is a logistical chal- lenge itself to say the least. So many take the long journey of driving up so we can have the resources we need. I have a couple coworkers that were kind enough to spend their day off driving me and my bike to the hotel in Portsmouth. When we arrived we spent a little time hanging out and had a frosty beverage before I sent them on their way back home. Part One Friday, May 8 We arrive in Portsmouth, Virginia at the Renaissance Hotel. I can't help but notice the great view of Norfolk ship yard out the window. First order of busi- ness; I take a walk to a local bike shop so my roommate can get an extra pair of bike shorts that he forgot at home. Next we take the Ferry to Norfolk (which is right outside hotel) and walk around and explore. We stop at the USS Wisconsin docked in the harbor and check it out. At 1500 mandatory medical check-in starts. At about 1600 we get our ok. This is a very easy task in which the medics that volunteer to accompany us on the trip ensure that none of your medical information has changed. They provide you with a wristband and a matching one for your bike. That way if something happens and you crash they know who you are and which bike is yours. We also picked up our luggage tags and Unity Tour bike jerseys and rider jackets. As a little something extra they gave us 2015 Unity Tour Pins and stickers. Three hours later a we meet and greet at the local GOSPORT Tavern. The restaurant was closed to the public so we could all hang out and socialize and meet new friends and exchange stories. What a great event and ice breaker— especially for new attendees! There were many new faces this year. The food also was fantastic and they had a large selec- tion of micro brews, which was a hit. Saturday, May 9 As the motto of the tour says, "We Ride for Those Who Died." In keeping with that theme, every year each tour member selects the name of a fallen officer from the previous year to honor Photos courtesy of Al Samuels

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