Burbank Police run the Special Olympics Torch through the City

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

The Burbank Police Department ran the “Flame of Hope” torch for the Special Olympics Southern California 2023 games from the Toluca Lake border to the Burbank Police Station on Wednesday, June 7, 2023.

The Special Olympics Southern California games will be held at California State University of Long Beach on June 10th and 11th. The games are open to people with intellectual disabilities, no matter the person’s age or skill level.  The competitions are year-round with inclusive training opportunities that emphasize health and celebrate personal achievements. 

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

Law enforcement officers run the torch from city to city and are called the Guardians of the Flame. They carry the “Flame of Hope” into the Opening Ceremony of local, state, provincial, regional, and world game competitions, with more than 100,000 law enforcement members running with the “Flame of Hope” annually.  The torch symbolizes courage and a celebration of diversity, uniting communities around the globe.

Six Burbank police officers ran with the torch and flag, starting from the corner of Riverside Dr. and Clybourn Ave. at the Toluca Lake border and ending at the Burbank Police Station on North Third Street. Six motor officers helped to block traffic as the runners made their way up Alameda passing The Burbank Studios and turning onto Olive.

The officers running wore blue Special Olympics torch run shirts that read, “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave.” Students from Saint Finbar stood on the curb at Olive holding signs that read “Thank You BPD” while cheering and shaking red pom poms to support the runners. One of the officers ran by, high-fiving some of the kids while the other officers waved and smiled.

Chief Michael Albanese drove the SWAT BearCat vehicle behind the runners, safely guiding them back to the Burbank Police Station. The runners made it to the station in under 40 minutes and were greeted by Burbank police staff, who clapped and cheered them on as they stopped in front of the bronze statue out front for pictures.

For a video of the Burbank police touch run, CLICK HERE.