JOPLIN, Mo. — Bright Futures Joplin is honoring two fallen Joplin Police Officers during its biggest fundraiser of the year.
Tonight was the fifth annual Guns and Hoses basketball tournament, which honored Corporal Ben Cooper and Officer Jake Reed who were killed in the line of duty last month.
Before the game Joplin Mayor Doug Lawson and Mayor Pro Tem Keenan Cortez presented a proclamation to recognize July 26th as Corporal Cooper day and March 9 as Jake Reed day.
Officer Rick Hirshey, who was also injured in last month’s deadly shooting, was in attendance and threw the jump ball.
“We hope this will really be a night where our local first responders will shake off the weight that’s maybe been holding onto the past few months. It’s been a rough time and we want to show them that the community is really there and in support. And its a great fun way to do it,” said Sarah Coyne, Coordinator for Bright Futures Joplin.
The Police Officers also honored retired officer Michael Gayman, who passed away earlier this month by leaving a seat open for him.
All the money raised tonight will be split, with half going towards a $1,000 scholarship to honor Corporal Cooper and Officer Reed.
The scholarship will be given to two Joplin High School graduates that are applying to the Criminal Justice program at Missouri Southern.
The other half will help Bright Futures Joplin with snack packs, clothing and shoes for students in need.
Tonight the Police Officers won 52 to 36.