Police, firefighters host fundraiser for families of fallen heroes

Posted: Updated:
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- The Phoenix Police Department, the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 2 and the Phoenix Fire Departments teamed up Friday to raise money for the families of two fallen heroes.

Officer Daryl Raetz and firefighter Brad Harper both were killed in the line of duty in separate incidents on May 19.

In their honor, police officers and firefighters are hosting breakfast, lunch, and dinner at F.O.P. Lodge #2, 12851 N. 19th Avenue, which is between Cactus and Thunderbird roads on the northwest edge of North Mountain Park.

Breakfast is 5 a.m.-9 a.m. Lunch is 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dinner is 5 p.m.-9 p.m.

For a $5, $10 and $15 donation respectively, you can eat as much as you want while showing your support for the first responders of Phoenix. All proceeds from the day-long event will benefit the Raetz and Harper families.

"We're trying to take little bit of the financial burden away from the families," Detective Mike Wilcox of the Phoenix Police Department explained. "It takes a little while to get the benefits started. It's hard enough to deal with the tragedy from the loss. We don't want to see the families suffer from the financial hardships, worrying about how they're going to pay the bills until the benefits kick in."

Raetz, 29, was conducting a DUI stop when he was killed by a hit-and-run driver. Jesus Cabrera Molina, 24, was eventually arrested in connection with the wreck. He pleaded not guilty last week and is due back in court on July 19.

Raetz left behind a wife and 5-year-old daughter.

That same day, Harper, 23, was pinned between two emergency vehicles trying to pass each other on a narrow road while on the scene of a mulch fire.

Harper is survived by his wife.

This is not the first time police and firefighters have hosted this kind of fundraiser. Wilcox said the public is always the biggest contributor. The outpouring of support means the world to a department devastated by yet another loss.

"We're carrying on," Wilcox said. "This is not the first time that we've lost guys and it won't be the last time. But we do what we do."

Breakfast (5 a.m.-9 a.m.) -- $5

  • Pancakes
  • Scrambled Eggs
  • Sausage/ Bacon
  • Hash-browns
  • Drinks

Lunch (11 a.m.-2 p.m.) -- $10

  • Hamburger
  • Hot Dog or Chili Dog
  • Potato / Macaroni Salad
  • Chips
  • Drinks

Dinner (5 p.m.- 9 p.m.) -- $15

  • Spaghetti with Lou’s famous sauce
  • Salad / Garlic Bread
  • Dessert
  • Drinks

Donations are tax deductible. Please make checks payable to The Arizona F.O.P 2 Foundation Inc. (tax number 86-0990465).

If you cannot make it out to the lodge today, but still want to make a contribution, you can do so online at lodge2.azfop.com. Just click the orange Donate button.