NEWBERRY — The Carolina Brotherhood, an annual cycling event featuring firefighters and police officers from around North Carolina and South Carolina, made a pit stop this year at the City of Newberry’s fire station on Wilson Road.
“We were approached by the Carolina Brotherhood,” said Keith Minick, chief of the City of Newberry fire station. “These bicycle riders ride for line of duty deaths in the fire service and law enforcement service in South Carolina and North Carolina.”
About 30 riders are participating in this year’s ride and as they are riding they are raising money for the charity.
According to Carolina Brotherhood’s website carolinabrotherhood.com, all donations, fundraising and support goes directly to helping the families of fallen firemen, police officers and first responders.
This year’s route started in Columbia and made its way to Greenville on Monday, making stops in towns like Chapin and Newberry for the riders to cool off and re-hydrate. The ride will eventually lead the cyclists to Raleigh, N.C.
Different fire departments and law enforcement agencies escorted the riders as they pedaled. When they came into Newberry County, they were escorted by the Newberry County Sheriff’s Office and the Little Mountain Rescue Squad.
When they got to the City of Newberry, a city ladder truck and City Police escorted them. A re-hydration trailer ahead of the cyclists stopped at designated points and sets up water, cold rags and snacks.
Minick said it was an honor and a pleasure to allow the riders to stop at the fire station, being that they are riding for line of duty firefighters.
“It meant a lot to us for what they are riding for, in the memory of fallen firefighters. Some of these people that are riding are affiliated with fire and law enforcement services,” he said. “Line of duty deaths, even today with heart attacks and cancer related illness, it is great to know people are still out there remembering. Like with 9/11, we say never forget, or the Charleston 9, we say never forget. For me, to have these people honor us, fire and law enforcement, especially at this time with things going the way they are going, I think it is a great honor to have people ride on their behalf.”
Butch Price, chief of the Friendly Fire Department, added that he thought it was a great honor as well.
One of the features of the Carolina Brotherhood cycling event is remembering those who have fallen in the line of duty. The names of the men and women who have died in the line of duty in the Carolinas appear on the T-shirts for the event and on their trailer.
Newberry residents who died in the line of duty and are included on this list are Strother Paysinger Jr., Friendly Fire Department; Lawrence Bragg III with Newberry County Sheriff’s Office; and J.D. Livingston and Forrest Krell, both with Newberry Police Department.
“We appreciate their efforts (Carolina Brotherhood). I applaud them and my hat is off to them for doing what we cannot,” Price said.
Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.