ARVADA (KDVR) – The impact of Arvada Police Officer Gordon Beesley is being felt around the country. A boy in Florida is paying tribute to him in a unique way.
Twelve-year-old Zechariah Cartledge loves running, and he loves first responders. So he combined his two passions a few years ago and decided to run one mile for each officer killed in the line of duty.
“I run a mile for every police officer, firefighter, border patrol member who loses their life in the line of duty and ever since 2019. I’ve done just over 930 miles for fallen first responders. It helps families, and I give grants to injured first responders. I’ve given over $145,000 to 20 different recipients over the past year-and-a-half with the help of donations,” Cartledge said.
He lives just outside of Orlando and has been running since first grade. Three years ago, he ran in a 5k to support the “Tunnels to Towers” nonprofit organization, which helps families of fallen first responders by paying off mortgages for first responders killed in the line of duty.
“I was inspired during the run. There were all these first responders, running in their full gear. I was curious, so I looked up more information about the foundation,” he said.
On Wednesday, he dedicated his night run to Arvada Officer Gordon Beesley.
“Every single new mile is a new family that needs comfort. Even though this is just a mile run, I think it is a tribute at heart. I want to make it the best I can every single mile.
Officer Gordon Beesley just sounded like an incredible person. He loved being able to help out kids and help in schools. He just sounded like a great officer at heart. We hope they heal as quick as possible. We want his whole family to know we will be with them through this hard time. We want them to have as much comfort as possible knowing there’s people supporting them. It’s the least we can do, knowing they are going through a hard time nobody should ever have to deal with,” Cartledge said.
To see Cartledge’s run dedicated to Officer Beesley, click here.
To make a donation to help Beesley’s family, click here.