Back the Blue Ride & Rally attracts thousands: ‘These are the people we rely on when we need help’

Local News

SCOTTSVILLE, N.Y. (WROC) — Thousands of people gathered for a ‘Back the Blue’ Ride & Rally, held in Scottsville on Saturday morning. Those attending the event said they’re there to show support for law enforcement and first responders. The event was hosted and organized by groups ‘True Blue – NY’ and ‘Blue Line Ride and Rally’.

“It’s important for the police department to see that they have a lot of support,” said Bill Centola, an attendee. “We need something like this. There’s too much going around in the world, it’s crazy, and there’s no respect for the police. When I heard about this rally I wanted to be part of it,” he said.

“These are the people we rely on when we need help,” said Bob Harder, another attendee. Harder is a member of the Patriot Guard Riders – that’s a group that attends and holds flag-lining at funerals for fallen soldiers and firemen. He said events like this one are a continuation of his support.

“I think we need to continue to do things like this, have support for police department, have support for the community,” he said.

One of the organizers Roberta Irwin said you don’t always hear the perspective of everyday police officers.

“The family are kind of silent as well, they kind of have to be, along with their police officer spouse. We kind of have to be their voice. I am reading a letter from one of the spouses so everybody can get the perspective of what they’re going through as well,” she said.

And there were a few police officers around for the rally, showing their appreciation for the support. They said they were also educating where mask-wearing was lacking.

Officers said people approach them with emotional stories, ranging from small to large.

“They thank me, for an officer who did something maybe as simple as help someone unlock their car, help them get into their house, help with a flat tire,” said David Catholdi, Chief of Police for the Town of Brighton. “I think this can bring us closer together, we can do two things at once, we can promote racial justice and equality but we can still support our law enforcement officers.”

Organizers say there will be another ‘Back the Blue’ rally planned for Aug. 16, in Bullis Park, Macedon. The ride for that event begins at 10 a.m.

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