Fayette County

Motorcyclists honor law enforcement officers who died in line of duty

Riders cruised down the Richmond Bypass during the 14th Annual Ride 2 Remember.
Riders cruised down the Richmond Bypass during the 14th Annual Ride 2 Remember.

Six Kentucky officers who died in the line of duty were honored by 200 motorcyclists at the Ride 2 Remember Saturday.

It is the 14th year the Blue Knights of Kentucky, an organization of active and retired law enforcement officers who enjoy riding motorcycles, have taken to the streets to show their support for law enforcement.

“This ride also give a way for citizens who want to give back to law enforcement,” said Joe Gilliland, Blue Knights president. “It’s a way to show support.”

Saturday’s ride began at the Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond after a short ceremony honoring each of the officers.

Over the years, Gilliland said, the group has raised more than $50,000 for the Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation. The foundation provides scholarships, support and assistance with medical emergencies to families after the loss of an officer.

The following information comes from the Officer Down Memorial Page, a non-profit that honors fallen law enforcement officers. Five of the six officers honored Saturday died in 2015. The sixth died in 2013 but was added to Kentucky’s memorial roll this year.

▪  Trooper Eric Chrisman, Kentucky State Police: Chrisman, 23, died in a crash June 23, 2015, on U.S. 62 near the Tennessee River Bridge in Livingston County. Chrisman had been a trooper for six months.

▪  Senior Patrol Officer Daniel Ellis, Richmond Police Department: Ellis, 33, died Nov. 6, 2015, two days after he was shot in the head while investigating the robbery of a gas station. Ellis had worked in the department for seven years.

▪  Trooper Cameron Ponder, Kentucky State Police: Ponder, 31, was shot and killed after conducting a vehicle stop on Interstate 24 near Lamasco on Sept. 15, 2015. He was a U.S. Navy veteran and had been with KSP nine months.

▪  Officer Burke Rhoads, Nicholasville Police Department: Rhoads, 35, died March 11, 2015, in accident on the way to take a training course at Eastern Kentucky University. Rhoads was a U.S. Army veteran and had served with the Nicholasville Police Department for seven years.

▪  Lt. Scott Travis, Bullitt County Detention Center: Travis, 55, suffered a fatal heart attack after clearing snow from the walkways of the detention center during a snowstorm March 5, 2015. He’d worked at the detention center for 11 years.

▪  Trooper Anson Blake Tribby, Kentucky State Police: Tribby, 25, was killed Jan. 22, 2013, while assisting with a motor vehicle fire on Interstate 64 near Winchester. Tribby was a trooper for 2 1/2 years.