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Police Unity Tour Receives Top NLEOMF Award

Presented with Distinguished Service Award for 2003

June 27, 2003

Washington, DC — The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF) recently presented its top annual award, the 2003 Distinguished Service Award, to the Police Unity Tour for their dedication and support of the Memorial and the more than 16,000 fallen officers honored there.

The Distinguished Service Award is presented each year during the Memorial's Candlelight Vigil on May 13th to an individual or organization that has made a lasting contribution to the law enforcement profession and to the Memorial Cause. Recent past recipients of this prestigious award have included former President George H. W. Bush, U.S. Rep. Mario (Ret.), then-U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno, "America's Most Wanted" host John Walsh, and the United States Mint Police.

The Police Unity Tour was founded six years ago by a group of dedicated police officers who wanted to help raise money and public awareness for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. Under the guidance of their founder and president, Sergeant Pat Montuore of the Florham Park, New Jersey Police Department, and their executive director, Harry Phillips, the officers made the first of many bicycle trips from New Jersey to Washington, D.C. in 1997. There were 18 bicyclists that first year, and together they were able to raise $18,000 for the Memorial Fund. Over the years, more officers from many other departments and states have joined the Police Unity Tour. This year was the most successful ride yet. Approximately 350 police officers from seven states-California, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and Virginia-were able to bike as far as 600 miles and raise $350,000 for the Memorial Fund.

Memorial Chairman Craig W. Floyd reported that the total Police Unity Tour contributions to the Memorial Fund over the past seven years is nearly $900,000. "But even more important than the financial support they give is that the Police Unity Tour is a personal and heartfelt tribute to our fallen officers from those who continue to follow in their footsteps," Mr. Floyd observed.

The Memorial Fund's annual Candlelight Vigil pays special tribute to those officers who have given their lives in the line of duty, and honors the 870,000 federal state and local officers who continue to serve our nation. The names of 377 officers who died in the line of duty were officially added to the Memorial during this year's ceremony, which marked the beginning of the 2003 National Police Week.

Learn more about the NLEOMF Distinguished Service Award.

Contact: Kevin Morison
202-737-7134 - kevin@nleomf.org