NORWICH – Special Olympics athletes and members of law enforcement will be set up at Dunkin’ Donuts Friday, Aug. 5 for Norwich’s local Cops on Top event.
Dunkin’ Donuts and the Law Enforcement Torch Run for the Special Olympics have joined forces to raise both awareness and funds to New York’s Special Olympics athletes for the past five years. This year’s local event kicks off at 6 a.m. at Norwich’s Dunkin’ Donuts location and will continue until 11 a.m.
New York State Trooper Jeremy Hicks said he was asked to help out with the event and is very much looking forward to it.
“In this day and age with law enforcement, it is important to get out there in the community so the residents see that we care,” said Hicks. “We care about them, their children, and these athletes.”
Hicks said a donation of any dollar amount will grant the visitor a coupon for a free cup of coffee or a donut. A $20 donation will get an attendee a t-shirt.
Hicks, who has been involved in law enforcement for eight years explained that events such as the Cops on Top event and the Law Enforcement Torch Run for the Special Olympics are very important to him.
“It lets the community know that cops are more just cops,” said Hicks. “We are out there and we support so many initiatives.”
“[Cops on Top] is a great thing and the money goes directly toward the Special Olympics of New York,” said Hicks. “I like when law enforcement is involved in things where we can be seen, and just talk to people. We like people to realize that we’re not just out there to arrest and ticket everyone. We’re people too, and we like to help people.”
Hicks added that members of State Police Troop C and the Chenango County Sheriff’s Office will be at the event, as well as civilian volunteers and athletes.
"The relationship between the officers and the Special Olympic athletes is like none other,” said Trooper Neil Case. “I think it's important for law enforcement to be involved with the Special Olympic athletes. I also think it's important for the community to recognize this partnership. In 2015, the New York Law Enforcement Torch Run raised nearly 2 million dollars for the Special Olympics. The money raised helps these athletes train and compete. The 67,000 Special Olympics athletes in New York are the ones who benefit from this. Not a single athlete has to pay to be a part of this special organization."
Anyone wishing to volunteer at the event can contact Cassandra Rucker at firstname.lastname@example.org or 315-440-0575.
Additional nearby Cops on Top events for those that will not be in Norwich Friday morning include the Dunkin’ Donuts in Sidney, Bainbridge, Whitney Point, Binghamton (Front Street), Johnson City, Vestal (near BU), and in the Cortland/Ithaca area.