Carrying a flame symbolizing their ongoing commitment to people with intellectual disabilities, representatives of local law-enforcement agencies participated Wednesday in the Special Olympics Torch Run as it made its way through southern Santa Barbara County.
The run followed a route that wound down the coast— through Goleta, Santa Barbara, Montecito and Carpinteria — a day after following a similar path through the North County.
A midday stop was made at the Sheriff’s Department’s main office on Calle Real, where numerous law-enforcement officials were on hand for a brief ceremony.
“My brother has been a participant in Special Olympics for three decades, doing bowling and shot put and softball throws, and I remember seeing him at those Special Olympics every year, smiling and participating and being a part of it,” Peterson said. “So it’s really neat for me to be a part of it from the law-enforcement end.”
The run is part of a year-long series of events that raise $100,000 annually in Santa Barbara County for Special Olympics, said sheriff’s Lt. Butch Arnoldi, who has headed up the effort for many years.
Despite toasty temperatures that had the runners sweating through each mile, the procession remained on schedule as it headed toward Ventura County, where that region’s law-enforcement agencies were to take over.
By the time the torch makes its way to San Diego, Special Olympics Southern California — the umbrella organization — expects to raise $1.4 million through a variety of events, including golf tournaments and tip-a-cop nights at local restaurants.
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