Rockland Patrol Officer John. P Bagley, one of the city’s several bike officers, will ride his bicycle to Washington, D.C., in May for the annual Police Unity Tour. On Feb. 10, he received a couple of donations to help pave the way.

Bagley’s colleagues in the Camden Police Department donated $250; and Rockland’s Aurora Lodge of Masons, of which Bagley is a member, donated $300 to the officer’s fundraising efforts for the trip. Each participant must raise a minimum of $1,650; with the local donations, Bagley has $1,340 toward that goal.

The Police Unity Tour, which convenes in Maryland for a mass ride to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in the nation’s capital, raises money for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and awareness of what the memorial pays honor to: the men and women who are killed each year in the line of duty.

“Nationally, an officer is killed approximately every 53 hours. There have been 25 line-of-duty deaths this year so far, which I don’t think a lot of people know,” said Bagley.

Before the riders set out from Annapolis, each is given a bracelet to wear in honor of an officer killed in the line of duty. Families of officers lost since the last tour will meet the riders at the memorial.

“We’ll be riding for that lost loved one; it can be very emotional,” said Bagley.

He said there were will be about 1,200 riders and some 600 to 700 support participants involved. Of the three officers from Maine in this year’s tour, he is the only bicycle rider.

Bagley will be riding with New Jersey’s Chapter Two, which encompasses the part of the Eastern seaboard that includes New England.

“There are some coming from California, which is a 45-day ride,” he said.

Those who wish to donate to Bagley’s participation in Police Unity Tour 2010 may visit firstgiving.com/johnbagley2010. For more information about the tour, visit policeunitytour.com.

VillageSoup’s Dagney Ernest can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by e-mail to dernest@villagesoup.com.