Niagara Gazette — The local leg of the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics took place Monday afternoon.
Runners departed Goat Island at noon with the symbolic "Flame of Hope," trekking 6 miles to Niagara University's Kiernan Center.
Among the local law enforcement personnel and Special Olympians on Monday was the Rev. James J. Maher, NU's president.
According to a Special Olympics spokesperson, Maher is the first university president in the Western Region to participate in the Law Enforcement Torch Run.
In 2013, more than 86,000 officers from 35 countries carried the "Flame of Hope" through their communities, raising more than $46 million for the Special Olympics, including over $1.7 million in New York state.
Established in 1981, the Law Enforcement Torch Run is the single largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle for the Special Olympics, having raised $461 million since its inception.
The torch makes approximately 45 stops on its statewide journey this year in preparation for the New York Special Olympics, which are being held Friday and Saturday at the University at Buffalo.