Because of severe weather, the Police Unity Tour Arrival Ceremony, originally scheduled for 2 pm today at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial, had to be canceled. Members of the Unity Tour plan to assemble at the Memorial at 7 pm this evening for a brief ceremony. However, they will not be riding their bicycles into the Memorial.
The Police Unity Tour was first organized in 1997 by then-Officer -- now Chief -- Pat Montuore of the Florham Park (NJ) Police Department. In May 1997, 18 riders biked four days to raise $18,000. Over the years, the effort has grown to include several chapters and hundreds of members and supporters. This year's riders, an estimated 1,100, set out last weekend from locations in northern New Jersey and Virginia Beach, VA. They had planned to ride into the Memorial this afternoon, but severe storms overnight in the area have closed some roads, and many of the law enforcement officers who would normally escort the cyclists had to be assigned to enforcement duties related to the storm. Still, this year's Police Unity Tour members proudly cycled hundreds of miles, "riding for those who died."