Hawai’i Police Department
Office of the Chief
Harry S. Kubojiri
March 23, 2009
On two early Saturday mornings in April, officers of the Hawai’i Police Department and supporters of Special Olympics Hawai’i will carry the “Flame of Hope” through the streets of Hawaii County in an effort to raise awareness and funds for the athletes of Special Olympics. This event, known as the “Troy Barboza Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics,” is a tradition in the law enforcement community around the world.
On Saturday, April 11, the officers and supporters will be in Kona for the West Hawai’i Torch Run. Participants will begin at 8 a.m. at the Old Kona Airport Park. The “Flame of Hope” will be carried from the park to Hale Halawai via Kuakini Highway, Palani Road and Ali’i Drive. At Hale Halawai, the torch runners will turn around and return to the park.
On Saturday, April 18, the officers and supporters will be in Kea’au for the East Hawai’i Torch Run. Participants will begin at 8:30 a.m. at the Kea’au police station. The “Flame of Hope” will be carried to the Kea’au High School track via Kekula Street. Its arrival at the track will signify the start of the Special Olympics track and field games scheduled for that morning.
The Troy Barboza Law Enforcement Torch Run is a coordinated project of the Hawai’i Police Department and Special Olympics Hawai’i. The Torch Run was created in 1981 by Chief Richard Lamunyon of Wichita, Kansas, who, along with a couple of deputies, ran the first torch run for Special Olympics. The torch is now carried by law enforcement officers — referred to as “Guardians of the Flame” — in every state and in more than 40 other countries. This International Torch Run, which lost money in 1981, raised more than $32 million world wide in 2008. In Hawai’i, the torch run is named after fallen Honolulu Police Officer Troy Barboza, who volunteered as a Special Olympics coach and participated in the first Torch Run in Hawai’i.
If you would like to participate or make a donation in East Hawai’i, please call Lieutenant Mitchell Kanehailua or Elena Kawazoe at 961-2314, or Lieutenant Gregory Esteban at 961-2213.
For participation or donations for West Hawai’i, call 326-4646. Ask for Detective Walter Ah Mow at extension 238, Detective Renee Morinaka at extension 301 or Sergeant Rollin Rabara at extension 315.
Persons who make donations of $20 or more will receive a free commemorative 2009 Troy Barboza/First Hawaiian Bank Law Enforcement Torch Run T-shirt or tank top. (A $25 donation entitles the donor to a long-sleeved shirt or one in XXXL size).