62 cyclists honor fallen peace officers


Sixty-two bicyclists finished the 630-mile Peace Officer’s Memorial Ride on Tuesday, raising $56,000 for the families of officers killed or severely injured in the line of duty.

The group pedaled into the Plaza of the Flags in Santa Ana after completing the five-day journey from Sacramento.

A candlelight vigil was held Tuesday night, and a wreath will be laid at 11 a.m. today behind the county courthouse at Civic Center Drive and Flower Street.

While the fundraiser officially honored officers killed in the line of duty, Placentia police officer Eric Anderson rode for one killed while off duty: Placentia Sgt. Gene Stuckenschneider Jr., 36, who was struck and killed by a car April 6 in the Mojave Desert.

Whittier officer Jeff Eriksen, who waited at the finish line for Anderson, said he knows the dangers of his job, but “you try not to think about it.”

Recent duty deaths

2004: Steven Phillips, 46, Westminster Police Department
2003: Tyler Pinchot, 45, Buena Park Police Department
2002: Matthew R. Davis, 38, Orange County Sheriff’s Department
2000: Steve Parsons, 36, Sheriff’s Department
1999: Brad Riches, 34, Sheriff’s Department
1998: Joseph S. Boyd, 54, supervisor of police gun range in Santa Ana
1997: Steven Van Horn, 48, Newport Beach Police Department
1996: Joey D. Little, 40, Placentia Police Department
1996: Don J. Burt, 25, California Highway Patrol
1996: Terry Fincher, 48, Brea Police Department

Courtesy of the OC REGISTER

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