In 1981, Chief Richard LaMunyon of the Wichita, Kansas Police Department conceived the Law Enforcement Torch Run as a way to involve his officers in the community by running a torch relay for their local Special Olympics. The first Torch Run involved six officers and they raised no money. Over twenty years later, the Torch Run has grown to include over 100 separate runs in over 35 countries. In 2006, over 85,000 law enforcement personnel raised more that $25 million to support community based sport programs for people who have a mental handicap.
Commander Jeff Noble has worked with Special Olympics for over 10 years and is a member of the Special Olympic of Southern California Torch Run Executive Committee.Commander Noble, along with Detective Brian Sims of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department coordinates the Torch Run through all of the Orange County legs of the event.This year, the Torch entered the State of California from Mexico and was carried by law enforcement officers throughout the state until its arrival at California State University at Long Beach where its appearance signaled the beginning of the 2006 Special Olympic Summer Games.
The men and women of the Irvine Police Department are proud to have had the opportunity to participate in this event designed to raise funds and awareness for Special Olympics and we are particularly proud that our efforts have helped to send local athletes to the Summer Games.