Annual 5K run honors fallen officers, supports widows, survivors

- There's something both heartbreaking and heartwarming about the Annual Arizona Fallen Officer Memorial 5K Run.

"The COPS organization has been so helpful to us. It means so much that all these people are here to support us. It really does," said Cathy Reed.

Participants get their blood pumping to remember the blood shed protecting and serving our community, like Arizona Department of Public Services Sergeant Mark Dryer.

His wife, Marie, now an organizer of the event, knows first hand deep loss.

"At the time, we had 5-year-old twins. They're 29 now and this was an organization that helped me through some very difficult times and I wanted to give back," said Dryer.

Many with the COPS network and this event are survivors helping survivors.

Like the wife of fallen Show Low officer, Darren Reed, Cathy says it's days like today that give her hope.

"Very proud, very proud that everybody is so supportive of law enforcement. That's something we haven't seen a whole lot lately and I'm so glad to see it now," said Reed.

Picking up the pieces after an unexpected loss is excruciating.

"They're in shock the first year. Their lives have been shattered," said Dryer. "Their hopes and dreams are gone. They have to establish a new normal and many of them have little kids and they don't know what they're going to do. So we help them through those tough times."

No matter how much time passes, Dryer and Reed say they know they're never alone.

"Our community is still here for us, everyday, everyday they're still here for us," said Reed.

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