Get Behind the Badge set for Aug. 25

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 Messenger photo by Dianne Garrett
A group of motorcyclists line up to head out for the fifth annual Terry McDowell Memorial Poker Run from Rooster’s in Whitehall Aug. 11.  About 150 bikes participated with 200 riders in the 118-mile trek.  The event benefited Get Behind The Badge, which offers financial assistance to police officers and firefighters injured in the line of duty, and to the families of those killed in the line of duty.  The event honors Whitehall Officer Terry McDowell, who was killed in the line of duty Aug. 24, 2001.

About 150 motorcycles with 200 riders roared through Whitehall streets August 11 as they headed out for the 118-mile Terry McDowell Poker Run to benefit Get Behind The Badge, which will take place Aug. 25.

The group started from Rooster’s on Hamilton Road, and ended at Buckeye Lake.

On August 24, 2001 Whitehall Officer Terry McDowell was killed in the line of duty, and his partner, Officer Eric Brill, was critically injured.  

McDowell’s wife, Angie, and friends organized the non-profit organization in his honor to help others.  Its mission  is to provide immediate financial aid to any law enforcement officer or firefighter who is critically injured or for the families of those killed in the line of duty.

The organization also seeks to promote and build a stronger relationship between the citizens of the community with their respective safety forces.

The seventh annual Get Behind The Badge event will be held at John Bishop Park, 4856 Etna Road.  Opening ceremonies will begin at 1 p.m. with pipes and drums and guest speakers.

A full day of activities is planned for all ages. There will be fingerprinting, face painting and fun for children, fire trucks, helicopters, K-9 units, cruiser competition, car show, and food from hot dogs to Mexican cuisine from Abuelo’s.  

There will also be a 50/50 drawing, raffles, and a live auction.  A $10,000 reverse raffle will highlight the day with three drawings at 3, 3:30 and 4 p.m.with prize money awarded in the amounts of $2,000; $3,000; and $5,000.  Raffle tickets are $25 each.

Other scheduled events include the cruiser competition at 4 p.m.; a car show from 2-5; and the Josh Dean Party Band performing from 6-9 p.m.

McDowell will be remembered during a ceremony at the neighborhood memorial located at the island on Little Flower,  Aug. 24 at noon, according to Police Chief Richard Zitzke.

For information on Get Behind The Badge, contact Angie McDowell,  at 989-0517; Officer Spencer Salyers, 989-0525; or Melody Brill at 309-9614.

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