Contact: Christina Bowen
JohnstonWells Public Relations
(303) 623-3366 or (720) 838-3681
Contact: Jonathan Cleary
I Love U Guys Foundation
(Bailey, Colo. ? Sept. 5, 2007) ? As the anniversary of the Platte Canyon High School tragedy approaches, the ?I Love U Guys? Foundation announced details today for the second annual Emily?s Parade to be held on Sept. 29, 2007.
The inaugural Emily?s Parade was held ten days after the shooting at Platte Canyon High School last year, when thousands of bikers streamed up U.S. 285 to the high school from Columbine High School to raise money to support the needs of the six girls who survived the siege. The ?I Love U Guys? Foundation (formed by the parents and friends of Platte Canyon shooting victim Emily Keyes) has embraced the spirit of that event and grown it into a statewide celebration that will bring together law enforcement officers, emergency responders, motorcyclists and other community members to raise money for the foundation.
The second annual Emily?s Parade will again feature a 37-mile motorcycle ride from Columbine High School to Platte Canyon High School. This year, a meaningful new leg has been added to the event: an idea born from the senseless tragedy at Platte Canyon High School. In honor of Emily Keyes, the Jefferson County Regional SWAT team will run 38 miles from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, in Golden, to Bailey ? along the same route the team responded to the school one year earlier. Upon reaching Bailey, the SWAT team will be joined by other law enforcement officers and emergency responders for what?s being called the ?Final Five? - the last five kilometers from the town of Bailey to Platte Canyon High School. Casey Keyes, Emily?s twin brother, will be running with the SWAT team.
?Our SWAT team is honored to be such an integral part of Emily?s Parade,? said Sgt. A.J. DeAndrea of the Jefferson County Regional SWAT team. ?This run is our team?s unique way of showing unity and dedication, not only to the Keyes family but to the healing of our SWAT team family. There?s often divisiveness within the community when there?s school violence of this magnitude, but the community pulled together immediately after the tragedy and Emily?s Parade is affirmation of the community?s continued strength.?
Sgt. DeAndrea was one of the SWAT team members who responded to the hostage situation at Platte Canyon High School. He and other first responders as well as motorcyclists will be raising money for the ?I Love U Guys? Foundation, which works to restore and protect the joy of youth through its powerful support of educational programs and positive actions in collaboration with families, schools, communities, organizations and government entities.
For more information about participating in Emily?s Parade or sponsorship of a participant, please visit www.iloveyouguys.org.