Foundation honors fallen officerDec 11, 2020 04:25PM ● By By Becky Ginos
By Becky Ginos | [email protected]
CENTERVILLE— Centerville Police Officer Jason Read was a big man with a big heart who genuinely cared about the people he served. Read passed away in an off-duty motorcycle accident Oct. 9, 2018 but his memory lives on. His sister Laurie Read has formed the Jason W. Read Protect and Serve Foundation as a way to help protect officers and ensure they return home safely at the end of every shift.
“We hope to raise $12,000 by the end of December,” she said. “We’ve been able to get five body cameras for Centerville and we’ve given $1,000 to Pleasant View City and made a donation to Ogden in honor of Officer Lyday to purchase ballistic shields. We’re giving a little bit here and there.”
To raise funds, the foundation has caps, T-shirts and yard signs for sale. “It’s 100 percent donated, the foundation has no expenses it’s strictly donation,” said Laurie. “We have raffle prizes from businesses that are donated so it doesn’t come out of the foundation.”
She said they contact the chief at each department to find out their needs. “That way we can see where the department can really use some assistance.”
Officer Read was headed home Sept. 23, 2018 when he was in a motorcycle accident. “He was off duty,” said Laurie. “He was in the hospital for two to three weeks and everything looked good. He was scheduled to go home that Friday but on Tuesday morning they got him up to walk around and he had intense chest pain and passed away.”
Laurie said there was an outpouring of love from the community. “I was blown away at how many residents commented on how good he was. He genuinely cared and listened. A lot of people asked for him.”
Read was with Centerville City for more than 10 years. “Officers there said Jason was always the first to go in,” she said. “He was their protector, what better way to honor him? He left a huge void. As his sister I wanted to carry something on.”
He was named Officer of the Year, she said. “He wouldn’t tell anybody about it, he would just say ‘that’s my job. That’s what I do, it’s what I love.’ He set the bar. He believed they weren’t just cops banging on the door they were there to listen.”
Read was 40 years old when he died. “He left behind a wife and three kids,” said Laurie. “I wanted to leave a legacy for his kids.”
Some Centerville citizens still post memories even two years later, she said. “He made a big impact on people because he actually, genuinely cared.”
To make a donation go to the foundation’s Facebook page at jasonwreadprotectandservefoundation or visit America First and contribute to the account in his name.