Now in Fifth Year, Annual Event Has Raised $5,000 for Memorial Upkeep
This month, the NHTI Criminal Justice Club will once again sponsor a motorcycle ride to benefit the New Hampshire Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. This year’s ride is set for June 28.
SEA member Steve O’Donnell, who’s an NHTI professor and adviser to the Criminal Justice Club, said in the first four years of the ride, they’ve raised $5,000 for maintenance and upkeep of the memorial. O’Donnell said the ride has grown over its first four years.
“The first year, I was apprehensive, so we kept it small and brought in $850,” O’Donnell said.
The next year, the ride coincided with race weekend in Loudon, so attendance dropped a bit. After learning from that scheduling slip-up, the annual event has really picked up steam.
“In the last two years, we’ve brought in $3,500,” O’Donnell said.
This year’s ride is set for Saturday, June 28 (rain date is June 29) at NHTI in Concord. Registration begins at 8 a.m., and the ride steps off at 9:45 a.m. There’s a $25 registration fee for the ride, with all proceeds going to the association that maintains the memorial. Included in the registration fee is a light breakfast and a barbecue lunch.
O’Donnell said the cause of preserving the memorial is an important one to him, as a former police officer. He said there’s an added significance to this year’s ride with the recent killing of Brentwood Police Officer Stephen Arkell.
“This year, we may have a larger turnout than usual,” he said.
Arkell was killed in the line of duty last month. His name will be added to the memorial next year.
This year’s ride is co-sponsored by a motorcycle club made up of military veterans and law enforcement personnel, the Nam Knights. O’Donnell said the motorcycle club does a lot of fundraising and works to help their own. The club first reached out to him before last year’s ride, he said.
“I got an email from the president of the club, and he told me they wanted to donate $500,” he said. “They said they were going to come and ride, and they showed up with eight or 10 bikes. I told them since they’d donated so much, they didn’t need to pay the registration fee, but they insisted.”
This year as a co-sponsor, the motorcycle club is donating all of the food for the event. This year’s ride will depart NHTI and head downtown past the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. The ride will then head north to Meredith for a stop at the American Police Motorcycle Museum before heading back to campus for the barbecue lunch. The ride will cover more than 100 miles, so it’s recommended that you fill up your gas tank before heading to campus.
If you’d like to join this year’s ride, O’Donnell asks that you contact him at either firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-978-957-1976 so he knows how many riders will be attending. You can find directions to the NHTI campus at www.nhti.edu/visit-nhti/directions-map.