11-year-old leads group running to honor fallen Florida trooper


WINTER SPRINGS, Fla. (WESH) – A Central Florida community is paying tribute to fallen Florida Highway Trooper Joseph Bullock.

The group is led by Zechariah, an 11-year-old boy who runs a mile each time a first responder is killed.

A mile is just seven laps around a small circle outside of the Layer Elementary School in Winter Springs, but the jog means a lot more for Zechariah Cartledge.

“I think that officers and firefighters are not, they don’t get as honored as much as they should be so I think the least I could do is use my passion running to run for them all,” Zechariah said.

Zechariah’s entourage is a group of dozens of Florida Highway Patrol troopers and other law enforcement officers.

They are running to remember fallen Trooper Joe Bullock and to let Bullock’s family know they are not alone in grief.

“I just want them to know that hopefully through this run, they find hope and happiness,” Zechariah said.

Investigators said Bullock was shot and killed near I-95 in Martin County, Wednesday.

He was reportedly trying to help Franklin Reed III with a disabled vehicle when Reed killed him.

A Riviera Beach police officer later confronted Reed and shot and killed him. Bullock served for 19 years with FHP and was also an Air Force veteran.

Some of his friends drove up from Stuart Thursday night for the run.

Zechariah runs a mile every time a law enforcement officer is killed. He said he’s run more than 400 miles for his heroes.

“He was a true hero and one I’ll never forget and I love how he sacrificed his life every single day to protect the state I live in,” Zechariah said.


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April 24 2021 08:00 am

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