Cycle ride to honor fallen police heroes

Amanda Keylock is planning her own version of the Police Unity Cycle Tour in honor of her husband, a detective, who died in 2003. – PHOTO: JAMES WHITTAKER

The widow of a British detective will cycle from Seven Mile Beach to Rum Point as part of an international tribute to fallen police heroes.

Amanda Keylock, whose husband died in a mysterious car accident as he drove home from a shift in Oxfordshire in 2003, will complete the ride on Sunday to coincide with a much larger tribute taking place in the U.K.

Hundreds of serving police officers will join friends and family of fallen officers to cycle across the U.K. in the annual Police Unity Cycle Tour.

The ride takes place every year to honor serving officers who have died and to raise money for the charity COPS – Care of Police Survivors – which helps support the families they left behind.

Ms. Keylock, who recently moved to the Cayman Islands, said the charity was a lifeline for her and her children after her husband’s death. Robert Keylock was killed after his car collided with a tree in Oxfordshire in 2003. The other vehicle involved in the accident had illegally tinted lights and left the scene of the accident. The circumstances of the incident remain unclear.

Mr. Keylock was 44 at the time, and he and his wife had two children, then aged 15 and 7.

Ms. Keylock has taken part in the cycle event previously, riding 180 miles over two days, from New Scotland Yard in London to the U.K. National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, where a memorial service takes place.

This year, 380 officers will cycle from police precincts around the U.K., converging on the arboretum on Sunday. Some of the riders will wear bracelets in honor of deceased officers, which they will present to their family members at the finish.

Ms. Keylock, who will complete her own ride with her new husband Russell Simpson, an officer in the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service, said it was important for her to be involved, even if she could not be at the actual event.

“It is more of a personal thing for me to do,” she said. “I am not able to be there this weekend so I thought I would do my own thing.”

She said the U.K. event was an expansion of a similar ride in the U.S. and she hopes it could expand to Cayman in future years.

“It would be great if that could happen,” she added.

Back in the U.K., Ms. Keylock said a cyclist from Washington would carry a bracelet in honor of her late husband.