CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Federal, state and local officials are putting on their running shoes to support victims of crime.

The 18th Annual Walk/Run for Justice was held Friday afternoon at Haddad Riverfront Park in Charleston.

The event takes place every year during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

Law enforcement officers, county officials and representatives with crime victims agencies participated in the race that stretched down the Kanawha Boulevard to the State Capitol.

This year’s events honor fallen heroes of law enforcement. The theme is “Back the Blue.”

Kimberly Eagle, victims services coordinator with the Charleston Police Department, said it’s unfortunate how many tragic incidents have happened in just the last few weeks in Kanawha County.

Last month, two Pratt Volunteer Firefighters were killed in a fire truck wreck. Earlier this week, an off-duty Huntington firefighter died in a head-on crash.

“We’ve had such tragedies here in our communities — Pratt and now Huntington — so we’re Backing the Blue and the officers that have given the ultimate sacrifice as law enforcement officers. It’s very special for us,” Eagle said.

In addition to fallen heroes, Eagle said they want to recognize all victims of crime that have dealt with assault, abuse, neglect, among other things. She said it’s important for victims to know help is out there.

“After the criminal prosecution, after everyone has gone home, those people are still suffering. They’re still hurting. They really need to know that we’re out here and the resources are available,” Eagle said.

Agencies had tables set up with information and resources during the race.

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