Mobile memorial for fallen law enforcement in Lee County

Published: July 4, 2022 5:25 PM EDT
Updated: July 4, 2022 9:42 PM EDT

A group of motorcyclists from across the country are remembering two Lee County Sheriff’s Officers and a State Trooper that died.

The End of Watch Ride to Remember is a mobile memorial. The goal is to honor those in law enforcement who died in the line of duty and to ensure that no officer is forgotten.

Every year the group travels to different states and this year it started in Spokane, Washington at the start of June.

Monday, they made it to Lee County to pay respect to three fallen law enforcement members. Paying respects to Lee County Sheriff Sergeant Steven Mazzotta, Deputy First Class William Diaz, and Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Brian Pingry.

Law enforcement
From left to right, Lee County Sheriff’s Sergeant Steven Mazzota. Lee County Sheriff’s Office Deputy First Class William Diaz. Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Brian Pingry. (CREDIT: WINK News)

“It’s special, you know, everyone that you see wearing a uniform, whether it’s a trooper, or a Lee County Deputy, has taken an oath to protect and serve,” Lieutenant Greg Bueno from Florida Highway Patrol said.

“Brian excelled. And when he got here, he was kind of like that fatherly figure to a lot of the young troopers,” Bueno said.

Whether they are a wife, husband, child, or parent they appreciate everything this group stands for because this is special to so many people. Laura Pingry, seen below, appreciated troopers standing alongside her after the memorial.

Troopers standing beside Laura Pingry, honoring her late husband, Brian Pingry. (CREDIT: WINK News)

“It’s emotional, when the first truck first pulled out, I kinda, you know, got choked up a little bit,” Pingry said. “It’s an incredible thing that they’ve done for all the officers. And throughout the years that they’ve done this.” Pingry placed a rose next to her late husband’s photo.

Laura Pingry places a rose next to her late husband’s picture. (CREDIT: WINK News)

“I kind of touched the picture to tell him I’m with him, and I know that he’s still with me,” Pingry said.

Jagrut Shah founded the “End of Watch Ride to Remember”. He explained he does this because it gives families a chance to again say I love you.

“They’re getting a last chance they’re getting another chance to say, hey, we still love you,” Shah said. “They’re getting recognition. They’re also being told by us as well as everyone else. We’re not going to forget your loved one and we are keeping to our promise.”

The group is traveling over 23,000 miles this summer ending on Wednesday, August 17, in Washington. Click here to see the rest of their schedule.

“I wanted to make sure that the families knew that they were not going to be forgotten, as well as the department’s letting them know that they’re hurt,” Shah said. “And what they’re feeling is not just within their city, or county or state, it’s actually nationwide.”

Beyond the Call of Duty also raises money to support law enforcement safety and training. The hope is to lower the number of fallen officers we see each year.