By Lisa Miller, Traveler Information Manager
Over the course of my career at UDOT, I’ve been fortunate to be involved in many unique opportunities that support Utah’s economy and keeps Utah moving. From special events that draw hundreds of thousands of attendees, to Governor Inaugurations and every day traffic events, we get to interact with a variety of UDOT partners on a regular basis. One of our most frequent partners, law enforcement, goes above and beyond every day to keep us safe. For that reason, I felt that the 10th Annual Utah Fallen Officers Memorial motorcycle ride was one that could not be missed.
On Sunday, August 21, thousands of motorcycle riders began the tribute ride in Lindon, Utah. Several UDOT employees participated in the event as a way to thank and support our law enforcement partners. UDOT’s Incident Management Team (IMT) drivers interact with Utah Highway Patrol and other law enforcement agencies on a daily basis. The ride progressed through Utah’s beautiful mountainside scenery and eventually led to the Utah State Capitol for a memorial ceremony.
Once the ride attendees reached the capitol, the memorial ceremony included a message from Colonel Michael Rapich from the Utah Highway Patrol. Officer Doug Barney, who was killed in the line of duty in January 2016, had several family members attending the event. Officer Barney’s young son, Jack, addressed the group with poise and said he visits the Memorial at the Capitol often. The Salt Lake City Police Department’s Explorer program, which allows teenage children to participate in an education program encouraging a future law enforcement career, received pins from children of fallen officers. While it was amazing to see all of the support for local law enforcement, the event was bittersweet.
For more information on Utah’s Fallen Officer Memorial, please visit https://www.utahsfallen.org/.