On Friday afternoon, a group of first responders is scheduled to roll into Orange Beach, capping off a 450-mile trek that began on Monday, May 20th in Eunice, Louisiana in honor of fallen colleagues.
The 2019 Gulf Coast Brotherhood Ride is honoring 12 fallen first responders from Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. It will finish at Orange Beach Fire Station No. 1, behind City Hall. Orange Beach Fire Rescue Assistant Chief of Training Kevin Lanford is part of the support team riding along with the group in a truck with medical and bicycle supplies.
Among the fallen first responders being honored is Orange Beach Police Officer Michael Stockwell. There will be an “honor stop” at the Orange Beach Police Department in recognition of Officer Stockwell.
Others being honored include the following:
- Officer Justin Billa, Mobile Police Department, Alabama
- Sergeant Charles Mitchum, Loxley Police Department, Alabama
- Agent Cadet Immanuel Washington, Louisiana Department Wildlife and Fisheries
- Officer Michael Paul Middlebrook, Lafayette Police Department, Louisiana
- Deputy Chief Russell Achord, West Feliciana Fire Department, Louisiana
- Reserve Officer Chris Lawton, Zachary Police Department, Louisiana
- Trooper Steven Vincent, Louisiana State Police
- Officer Natasha Hunter, New Orleans Police Department, Louisiana
- Officer Marcus McNeil, New Orleans Police Department, Louisiana
- Deputy David Michel Jr., Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana
- Agent Josie Wells, United States Marshalls Office, Southern District, Mississippi
Each Gulf Coast Brotherhood Rider was required to raise at least $500 in donations that will be divided amongst the families of the fallen at the end of the ride. In-kind donations and sponsorships are covering the cost of the ride.
Over 30 law enforcement officers, firefighters, EMTs and other first responders are riding in the group with about a dozen support staff.
According to the Gulf Coast Brotherhood Ride website, https://gulfcoastbrotherhoodride.com: “By riding bicycles across Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama, the Gulf Coast Brotherhood Ride aims to show the family, friends, and departments of those we have lost that we will Never Forget! In addition to honoring their memories and providing emotional support, the ride raises funds to financially support the families as well. Year after year we are committed to honoring all our brothers and sisters lost in the line of duty and we promise we will Never Forget the sacrifices made.”
The riders are expected to arrive at Orange Beach Fire Station No. 1 around 4 p.m. on Friday, May 24th, weather permitting. Follow the group on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GulfCoastBrotherhoodRide.
For more information and to donate, go to gulfcoastbrotherhoodride.com.