SPRINGFIELD - Officers biked with a purpose.
More than four dozen riders began a four-day, 300-mile trek across the state.
The goal is to honor fallen law enforcement officers and help raise money for their families.
“Today, I'm riding for investigator Cuauhtemoc Estrada,” said Chicago Police Officer Assata Olugbala. “He was killed in the line of duty in December 2013. he was a Cook County investigator."
Olugbala works as a liaison officer so she helps families of fallen officers regularly. She shows her armband with Officer Estrada’s name inscribed on it.
"You look at these bands and you think about why you're here,” Olugbala said. “This is a pain the family will endure for a life time, my pain is minimal so you keep up and keep moving."
Ellen Miller lost her son Rodney almost nine years ago. Today her daughter is riding.
"It warms my heart to think she is doing this for her brother,” Miller said.
She said coming each year is healing.
"The support you get from Illinois cops is just unreal,” Miller said.
Not everyone riding has served on the thin blue line. Ask sherry day from Springfield.
“I have friends that I ride with that have lost their spouses,” Day said. “My dad's a retired state policeman and my son-in-law is now a state policeman."
Despite wiping out at the end of the course in Chicago last year, Day has no plans to quit this race.
"Because these families get up every morning and deal with what they deal with, so I think four days of whatever's going to bring us we can get through it,” she said.
This is the ride’s 10th anniversary. The first ride started with just two bikers and has now expanded to 55.
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