Zechariah Cartledge’s running tour across the nation continued Saturday in Northern California where he led a small group that included injured California Highway Patrol Officer David Gordon down Acacia Avenue in Sutter.
The run, a mile long, was in support of first responders in California killed or injured in the line of duty.
Gordon was severely injured over a year ago by an alleged drunk driver while directing traffic at Lomo Crossing on Hwy 99.
He suffered major injuries to his legs, pelvis, jaw and shoulder blades, which required multiple surgeries. On Saturday Gordon, still with a noticeable limp, rode a bike alongside Cartledge and a small group down Acacia Avenue with American flags flowing and bagpipes bellowing out in support of the nation’s first responders.
“It's a wonderful idea and brings national attention to the issue of how many officers have been killed,” Gordon said.
Cartledge and his family started the journey in 2019 with a nonprofit known as Running 4 Heroes, Inc. Since then Zechariah runs one mile for every first responder, who makes the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty, according to a statement from the website.
Since Jan. 8, 2019, Zechariah said he has run just under 700 miles and raised $60,000 for first responders. He presented $5,000 to Gordon and his family on Saturday prior to the run.
“It’s important for all law enforcement officers that the support is still there,” Gordon said.
Zechariah, 12, said the plan is to run a mile in every state by the time he is 18.
To donate to Running 4 Heroes, visit running4heroes.org/donate.