Police officer on softball field

The Greer Police Department hosted the 12th Annual Upstate South Carolina Law Enforcement Memorial Tournament over the weekend at Century Park.

“It’s public safety folks from all across the Upstate come together and play a softball tournament every year and we raise money for the families of officers who are killed in the line of duty here in the Upstate,” Greer Police Department Lt. Kara Blackwell said.

As Greer Police Chief Matt Hamby explains, the tradition has been happening in Greer for more than a decade.

“In 2012 deputy roger rice with the Lauren’s county sheriffs office was killed in the line of duty and we had two members of it team here at Greer pd who felt a heavy burden on their heart to do something to help the situation,” Chief Hamby said.

This year, the focus was on fallen Easley Police Officer Matthew Hare and support of his family.

"They are going to throw the first pitch for us and we are also going to have an opportunity to present them with funds from our tournaments in years past we get to present them with those funds today,” Lt. Blackwell said.

Saying the turnout of seven teams and close to a hundred players, plus spectators who come to watch, shows the importance of this tournament to those in the Upstate.

“It’s an honor the fact that we have teams that come out 12 years straight to play in this event is an honor and it’s a privilege for me to have a part of it,” Lt. Blackwell said.

“This is an effort that is heavily supported by our community not just the law enforcement community but everybody in the Upstate pitches in and we are able to financially and morally and respectfully support the families of the fallen,” Chief Hamby said.

If you’d like to make a donation to the program you can reach out to the Greer Police Department an ask for Lt. Blackwell.