DALLAS — They ran.
“I went home yesterday. I got up this morning. There’s no excuse for me not to do it,” Dallas County Community College District Cpl. Jesus Guzman said after running a 5k in full Police uniform.
“This was not meant as a somber occasion. This was meant just to have some fun and relax,” Officer Down Foundation CEO Willie Ford said before their annual 35-mile motorcycle ride.
“We wanted to get together as a community and remember something, that we can all kinda push through the pain,” said Joe Lopez, owner of Crossfit Heat and a Dallas Police SWAT officer.
They came together, and they went with God, praying “In the name of Jesus, Amen!” before hopping on the motorcycles.
The City of Dallas, its Police officers and people, turned action into reaction Saturday with events across the city to remember last year’s ambush shooting.
“Every tear I’ve cried, I know Heidi’s cried a thousand,” said Gillian Norman, a friend of fallen officer Michael Smith and his family.
It was all done in an effort to make it out the other side. We all remember the July 7 ambush that killed Dallas Police Sgt. Smith, Cpl. Lorne Ahrens, Officer Michael Krol, and Officer Patrick Zamarripa, as well as DART Officer Brent Thompson.
“I was there when everything was happening all the way to the very end, so for me personally, this means a lot,” Lopez said.
Lopez is a DPD SWAT officer and the co-owner of Crossfit Heat, a gym started by Dallas officers. His idea was for athletes to hurt in order to help people get over the hurt.
“All the money goes directly to the HALOS Fund, which represents Dallas officers throughout time since the department started,” he said of his event, Dallas Five Throwdown.
Weekend of Honor was a trio of events: Run for the Blue, Officer Down Foundation Moto Ride, and Unity Chain. The last of those was a Guinness world record attempt to have the most heart hand gestures held in the air at one time.
A massive group got together for Sgt. Smith’s family at the Run, and they reflected everyone’s thoughts.
“Every fall back we’re going to be there to catch her, every move forward we’re going to be there to celebrate with her,” said Smith family friend, Barbara Durkee. “She just needs to know that we’re here for her no matter what. Her and the girls.”
And that’s what Dallas proved Saturday. They’re there, they’ll be there, and they’ll never forget.