ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) – They're putting the pedal to the medal for a good cause. The Blue Knights Chapter 22 is made up of law enforcement officers from all different agencies. Saturday, the motorcycle group invited friends and family to ride with the group as they hosted their first sponsored event at Clawson Assembly of God on Highway 69 North.
It's a rare site, dozens of law enforcement officers from agencies across East Texas, revving their engines. "This is kind of our way to relax and let our hair down," said Cpl Wes Ross with the Lufkin Police Department.
"The Blue Knights range everywhere from Rusk all the way down to Livingston," said Sgt Mark Hurst with the Nacogdoches Police Department. The East Texas chapter is holding their first riding event to raise money for the Angelina Alliance for Children.
"We're hoping to you know bring awareness to the community, bring an awareness to the world that there is a problem, there is an epidemic on sexual assault and abuse of our children, as well as women," said Chief Deputy for the Polk County Sheriff's Department, Byron Lyons.
"These kids are innocent victims and we're here to stand for them," said Ross. They say it's the ultimate bonding experience. "You also get to see the other people in law enforcement from other agencies and get to meet them and you know enjoy yourselves," said Lt. Pete Cooper with the Angelina County Sheriff's Department.
Part of their mission is promoting safe riding. "Be aware that we're out here you know, I mean we're a small object, we're so hard to see so riding in large groups like this one sometimes makes it a lot safer," said Patrol Sgt Steve Baker with the Diboll Police Department.
They were reminded of the dangers of cycling this morning when San Augustine motorcyclist Gordon Carlton was injured.
"It appears he was turning into a driveway to meet his son-in-law out on 706 and they were actually coming here to ride this morning and a vehicle topped a hill and hit him from behind," said Baker.
"We feel for him and we're going to see what we can do to help him now," said Hurst. According to DPS, Carlton was taken to Memorial Hospital with minor injuries. Keeping safety in mind, the cyclists set out as one giant family, undivided.
The riders traveled roughly 100 miles, heading as far as Groveton. Following the ride, Blue Knight members sold BBQ plates, also for charity.
If you'd like to find out more about the Texas Blue Knights Chapter 22 you can visit their website at http://www.blueknightstexasxxii.com/ and if you'd like to help them with fundraising efforts you can contact your local law enforcement agency for more information.