KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — It’s been nearly three years to the day since Officer Eric Zapata was shot and killed in the line of duty.
Hundreds gathered for the annual Zapata memorial run Saturday morning.
The 5K race was held at the Kalamazoo Valley Community College. More than 750 people participated and $20,000 was raised.
Zapata was shot while coming to the aid of a fellow officer who came under fire while out on a report of shots fired in a Kalamazoo neighborhood in 20-11.
Zapata was a 10-year veteran of the Kalamazoo Public Safety. His death marked the first time a Kalamazoo Public Safety officer was killed in the line of duty.
Organizers of the event say the race is to make sure Zapata is never forgotten.
“It’s most important that the community remembers what the people in public safety and EMS and fire do every day,” said Craig Stouffer, who helped organize the event. “It’s also important that when his family shows up that they see 750 people who are just out here enjoying the day and remembering Eric.”
All proceeds go toward the E-Z memorial foundation which provides a scholarship fund for law enforcement students.