BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – More than 25 first responders have put their uniforms to the side for a bicycling mission.
Over 21 different agencies and four different states besides Louisiana are cycling their way to different areas where a police officer, EMT, or fireman was killed on duty. The group is called the Gulf Coast Brotherhood.
Sgt. Ryan Brasher of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Region 1, said he has been part of this biking group for four years, and as a first responder this is something that has more meaning.
“I am a wildlife and fisheries agent. I’m law enforcement and when I get to represent them by riding miles and focusing on them, the 12 that have fallen, it’s a really special feeling,” said Brasher.
Honoring 12 fallen first responders is the mission for this year, bringing them to ride for a total of more than 400 miles, according to board member of Gulf Coast Brotherhood Ride Kevin Lanford.
Lanford also gives big thanks to the community that supports the bike group.
“We just appreciate the support of the community and not only the first responder community but the community support which is so vital to our mission. We stay in churches, we stay in community centers, we stay in school gymnasiums. We stay pretty much anywhere people will host us. We try to be self-supporting with our air mattresses and cots. Now we have church groups, school groups, civic organizations that will feed us,” said Lanford.
A full list of those who will be honored is provided below by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office:
- Firefighter Scott Osenenko – Livingston Parish Fire Protection District 4, Louisiana
- Officer James Ellis Foster Jr. – Denham Springs Police Department, Louisiana
- Sergeant Nicholas W. Tullier – East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office
- Master Trooper Adam Christopher Gaubert – Louisiana State Police
- Officer Thomas Joseph LaValley – Shreveport Police Department, Louisiana
- Patrolman Austin Spencer Bush – Houma Police Department, Louisiana
- Detective Stephen Christopher Arnold – Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office
- Reserve Deputy Constable Martinus Melvin Mitchum – Second City Court of New Orleans Constable’s Office, Louisiana
- Sergeant Theresa Elizabeth Simon – Slidell Police Department, Louisiana
- Lieutenant Michael Anthony Boutte Sr. – Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, Mississippi
- Deputy Sheriff William Henry Smith Jr. – Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office, Alabama
- Officer Ivan Mauricio Lopez – Mount Vernon Police Department, Alabama