Johnston County

Bike ride to honor fallen first responders in Carolinas

Members of the Carolina Brotherhood gather at the N.C. State Highway Patrol Memorial in Raleigh at the conclusion of the 2016 ride.
Members of the Carolina Brotherhood gather at the N.C. State Highway Patrol Memorial in Raleigh at the conclusion of the 2016 ride. CAROLINA BROTHERHOOD

On June 12, the Carolina Brotherhood will roll out of the Smithfield Fire Station, cycling to Beaufort, S.C., over five days to honor public safety officers who died in the line of duty.

The team is made up of 30 riders and 20 support staff, all whom are firefighters, paramedics, police officers or public safety family members from across the Carolinas.

The group formed in 2012 after the death of Capt. Jeff Bowen of the Asheville Fire Department, who died in a fire at a medical office building in Asheville. The mission of the Carolina Brotherhood is to raise money for the families of fallen first responders and to honor their memories. During the trek, riders will stop at local fire stations and police stations and communities to honor the families of the fallen.

The first honoree will be firefighter Chris Daniels of the Smithfield Fire Department, who died suddenly in 2015 while on duty.

Among the riders is Jason Deitch of the Garner Fire Department. “We want the families to know that even years down the road, we have not forgotten about their loved one who paid the ultimate sacrifice,” he said. “We want the families to know that we still honor them now.”

To support the riders’ fundraising efforts, go to carolinabrotherhood.com.

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