ZACHARY, LA (WAFB) - A running club in Zachary came together Thursday night to honor fallen police officer and firefighter, Chris Lawton.
The group, called the Bronco Stampede, showed up at the Walk-On's wearing red, white, and blue, including flashing lights on their shoes. The founder of the group is a Baton Rouge Police sergeant who went to church with Lawton. He says the idea to honor his fellow officer just popped into his head Thursday morning after reflecting on Monday's tragedy.
"Just in memory and honor, ya know. I got to looking at the date, 3-12. 3.12, that's a 5K. We do it every week. Why not do it for more than yourself? Why not do it for something else?" said Sgt. Kyle Callihan.
Lawton will be laid to rest on Saturday. The public is invited to line the route of the funeral procession, which begins at Zachary United Methodist Church and then travels along Highway 64 and Plank Road toward Clinton.
Christopher Lawton, 41, wore many hats and served in numerous different roles in his jobs at the Zachary Fire Department, where he worked for 20 years, and on the city police force, where he answered the call to duty for nearly a decade. He was a decorated Deputy Chief and an arson investigator.
Lawton died on Monday, March 12 after he was killed during a hit-and-run crash.
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Donations were collected at the run as well. The family has requested all donations be made to charities in Chris' honor.
Memorial donations may be made to First Responders Children's Foundation, 38 East 32nd Street, Suite 602, New York, New York 10016 or Wounded Warrior Project, PO Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8517 or directly to the Zachary Fire Department or Zachary Police Department.
The Baton Rouge Firefighters Local 557 has also opened an account at BRFD Federal Credit Union. The account number is 6090-B. Donations will be collected for 30 days. On April 10, all donations will be given to Lawton's family.
Lawton leaves behind a wife, two children, his parents, and brothers and sisters.