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Forest Preserve Police Raise Funds for Special Olympics



Photo for: Forest Preserve Police Raise Funds for Special Olympics

Forest Preserve Police Officer Steve Kirsch was one of the many officers taking part in the event to help raise money for Special Olympics. (Photo by Glenn P. Knoblock)

Forest Preserve police raised more than $3,000 during the recent Cop on a Rooftop fundraising event, which benefits Special Olympics.

Officer Steve Kirsch said through his volunteer work with the organization, he has seen firsthand how Special Olympics benefits participants. “Seeing the joy on the athletes' faces is my main reason for participating in Special Olympics,” he said. “The funds raised by the Dunkin' Donuts Cop on a Rooftop go to pay for these events.”

Kirsch added that the fundraiser shows police in a positive light and it is a bonding experience for the department.

Officer Darrell Mayle also participated in the Cop on a Rooftop event. He said he started participating in torch run fundraising events organized by Special Olympics because he loves running, but then he got to know the special needs athletes, and he saw how much they enjoy the games and winning medals.

“The games give them purpose and provide a social outlet,” he said. “And through our fundraising and the generosity of the community, we are able to help make it affordable for these families who need it.”

Also participating in the Cop on a Rooftop event from the police department were: Chief Tracy Chapman, Sgt. Dan Olszewski; Officers Rick Lewandowski, Matt Yates, Vinnie Cimino, Dave Starcevich and Brad Veerman; office manager Nicole Veerman; and Community Service Officer Jennifer Hemmeger. Other participants were Kirsch’s wife, Chris, and daughter, Rikki; and Mayle’s daughter, Emily.

Chapman said she thinks it’s important for her department to support this worthwhile cause because it celebrates sports and inclusion.

“As representatives of the Forest Preserve, we take pride in supporting organizations that promote inclusion. As a college athlete, I believe that sports promote teamwork and physical and mental fitness, and instill a sense of leadership in the athletes. We were honored to participate in the 50th Anniversary Cop on a Rooftop event and look forward to participating annually.”

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