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2020 Special Olympic torch run feels different this year

Oct 09, 2020 09:51AM ● By Julie Maxwell Allen

2019 torch run. Photo by Boyd A 

Loving



Every year the Glen Rock Police Departments’ Officer Adam Pytek organizes and runs the Special Olympic Torch run through Glen Rock.  This year, due to COVID-19 the torch run will feel different. There will be fewer runners and no donations. 

 The torch will be carried by Olivia Childs. The group will run from the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Rock Road, all the way down Rock to Hamilton Avenue, down Hamilton to the Middle School/High School. They then went down Harristown Road to Maple Avenue, where the Glen Rock police officers hand it off to the Fair Lawn officers.

The Law Enforcement Torch Run began in 1984, the brainchild of Port Authority Police Officer Steven Vitale, who had been asked, in 1982, to take photos at a local Special Olympics competition in New Jersey. Vitale was so moved by the determination of the athletes in the competition that he asked his fellow police officers to volunteer at the Special Olympics Summer Games and that led to the creation of the Torch run, which first ran from Liberty State Park in Jersey City to Rutgers Stadium in New Brunswick, covering 43 miles, through eight towns, and raised $7,000. The funds raised have gone up every year, and to date, the Law Enforcement Torch Run and other efforts by the police raises over $3 million annually for Special Olympics New Jersey.

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