The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department held a Memorial Day roping event to honor fallen deputies Isaiah Cordero and Darnel Calhoun Sunday at the Riverside Rancheros Equestrian Center.
The sheriff’s department’s mounted enforcement detail made a special appearance.
”We love our horses. We love our deputies and this was the best thing we could have right now,” Assistant Sheriff Dave Lelevier told KTLA.
Families came out for food and fun and to watch the roping competitions. A very special leather saddle was the top prize in a raffle held during the event that raised some $8,000 for the families of the two deputies.
The event was a first of its kind for the sheriff’s department, and while there was plenty of entertainment, many attended as a way to honor the two deputies, both of whom lost their lives while on duty.
Motorcycle Deputy Cordero was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop in Jurupa Valley on Dec. 29, 2022. Just two weeks after that, Deputy Calhoun was shot and killed as he was responding to a domestic violence call in Lake Elsinore.
“Not only do we honor all of our own service members, but our own deputies, our people that battle good versus evil on the street everyday,” Levelier said. “We’ve been mourning that and trying to get over it because our deputies know that they have a duty and an obligation to get back in the saddle, pick up your sword and ride again.”
The event drew people like Michelle Hughes who told KTLA that it’s important for the community to rally behind the families of the fallen deputies.
“I think a lot of people forget to associate officers with their families,” she said. “So, with these events, ti just brings a community together.”