Teen Cycles Down California Coast to Raise Money for Fallen Officers' Families

Travis Risley traveled the coast of California on his bicycle to raise money for the families of fallen peace officers.

One California teenager has an excellent response when asked what he did over the summer.

Travis Risley, 16, is the son of an officer with the Napa Police Department.

In 15 days, he’s traveled more than 1,100 miles from the border between California and Oregon to the U.S.-Mexico border.

The trip began July 7 with Risley, his father, and another cyclist.

Within a few days, Risley said he was being recognized as “the kid from the news.” He’s seen support from the community and had cyclists even join him for stretches of the ride.

After 15 days on the road, he arrived in San Diego County.

Risley said he’s witnessed negative attitudes from the public towards law enforcement officers. It’s part of the reason he decided to tackle such a trip.

“Seeing that I feel like they’re just people and no one really realizes that,” Risley said. “Most of them are great people and they’re just out there to do their job.”

His goal was to raise $10,000 for the California Peace Officer Memorial Foundation.

He met that goal one week in. As he nears the end, he's raised almost $20,000.

Risley has met several families of fallen officers throughout his trip. He expects they will become life-long friends.

He met the widow and children of East Palo Alto Police Department Officer Rich May. Officer May was killed in the line of duty on Saturday, January 7, 2006.

“I’ve now seen the families of fallen police officers and I’ve heard the stories,” he said.

How will it feel to complete the ride?

“It's going to be nice to relax and not have to worry about getting up at 5:30 a.m.,” he said. “But it's going to be really disappointing because I want to keep doing this.”

Find out more about the ride and how you can reach Travis here. 

Contact Us