OPD officers promote acceptance and inclusion in Special Olympics torch run

Five officers from the Odessa Police Department recently participated in the Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR) in support of the Special Olympics Texas (SOTX) Summer Games, held in San Antonio from May 16-19. Their participation is part of a global effort to champion acceptance and inclusion for people with intellectual disabilities.

This past year, the LETR has successfully raised an impressive $1.25 million for SOTX, furthering their mission to foster a more inclusive and accepting society. The officers proudly ran the 2.8-mile final leg of the Torch Run, joining law enforcement officers from across the state to support the athletes, an OPD news release said.

During the Summer Games, the officers took an active role in various events. They cheered on the athletes from the ECISD Goal Busters during the soccer tournament, showcasing their support and encouragement. The officers also volunteered to assist with Track and Field events, taking on responsibilities such as timekeeping, award presentations, and organizing athletes for their respective events.

One of the most meaningful aspects of their participation was acting as Unified Partners during the FUNdamental Sports events. These events are designed for athletes who, due to their skill and/or functional abilities, are unable to participate in traditional Special Olympics sports competitions. The inclusion of Unified Partners as one-on-one assistants allows athletes and officers to develop lasting friendships and provides an enriching experience for all.

The officers’ involvement in the Summer Games also served as valuable preparation for hosting the upcoming Fall Classic with the City of Midland. This experience allowed them to gain insights and understand what to expect as they plan and organize a Torch Run for the Fall Classic.

The participating officers were:

  • Lieutenant Caleb Lacey
  • Corporal Marshall Williams
  • Detective Gabriela Carrasco
  • Officer Destiny Jones
  • Officer Kurt Williams

The Odessa Police Department remains committed to supporting Special Olympics Texas and its mission.