ELYSIAN PARK (CBSLA.com) — Hundreds of people took part in the 6th Annual Randy Simmons 5K Challenge in honor of the first LAPD SWAT officer killed in the line of duty.
Hosted by the LAPD Metro Division, the event paid tribute to Randy Simmons, a 27-year veteran who was shot to death in 2008 during a raid of a house in Winnetka, according to KNX 1070’s Pete Demetriou.
The event — which included a cross-fit challenge, a 5K run, and the Police Unity Tour Bike Ride — began at 8 a.m. Saturday just outside the Los Angeles Police Academy, located at 1880 N. Academy Road in Elysian Park.
In the wake of his death, it became known that Simmons was a devout Christian and role model for the children he mentored.
“[Randy] would go to [the] inner-city and he would share the gospel of Jesus Christ with the children there and also show them a different life outside of the projects,” said LAPD SWAT officer Joe Goosby.
“He was a living legend … and it’s important to keep his memory alive and keep what he felt was important going even though he is not here,” Goosby said.
Since his death, Simmons’ widow and others created the Randal D. Simmons Outreach Foundation to continue his legacy of love and compassion.
“Randy was really passionate about reaching out and helping children in under-served areas, at-risk youth,” Lisa Simmons told CBS2’s Joy Benedict.
Funds raised from the day’s event will go toward helping children in under-served communities as well as offering scholarships to students in need.