GREEN BAY, Wis. - It's not unusual for police officers to display strength and courage, but one northeast Wisconsin officer went well beyond the call of duty to honor his fellow officers killed in service.
Officer Israel Deutsch ran the Cellcom Green Bay marathon Sunday in full uniform.
"It adds a little bit of weight. It's like ten pounds on my belt. Everything on here is replicated, the same I'd wear at work and then I have a three pound restrictive body armor vest underneath here," said Deutsch, an 8-year veteran of the Hobart-Lawrence Police Department.
His inspiration is officers who have lost their lives serving their communities. He's raising awareness and money for the families of those officers.
"It's basically about honoring and the memory of law enforcement killed. So, it doesn't matter how long it takes me. I'm not sure how long it's going to take me, but that's all it's about," said Deutsch.
It was a cool breezy start to the race, but as the sun beat down and the miles started to add up, it took its toll on the officer.
"An injury came back about mile 19 so I had to walk a little bit, but it's not about racing, it's about the journey coming out here and spreading the word," said Deutsch.
More than 20 miles into his uncomfortable marathon effort, Deutsch didn't give up.
"It's the thoughts of those officers making me push through that pain the last couple, and half of a mile and getting me through the finish line," said Deutsch.
After a rigorous four hours and 24 minutes, and 26.2 miles, he crossed the finish line.
What he heard from runners and the crowd along the way in was exactly what he was hoping for.
"It was constant, 'thank you for your service.' So we appreciate that as a police community," said Deutsch.
Officer Deutsch says he'll continue to honor fallen law enforcement officers when he enters a September Iron Man event in Madison.
If you would like to follow Officer Deutsch's efforts or make a donation, go to thinblueline2kona.com.