The roar of engines and beautiful motorcycles are common sight and sounds in Panama City Beach this weekend. But, it was a small parade of bikers that turned heads Saturday afternoon. The rain didn't prevent dozens of riders from honoring a fallen hero.
Sergeant Kevin Kight was a shift supervisor with the Panama City Beach Police Department's Patrol Division. Kight was killed during a felony traffic stop on March 27th, 2005. He left behind his wife Christina and son Brandon, who was four years old at the time.
"Everywhere you go, there's a reminder. Everybody remembers, but it's good. It is good. It's good for other officers because it helps remind them to stay on their toes," said Christina Kight, who sat down with News 13 for an exclusive interview.
The beach community honors the fallen officer with a bi-annual motorcycle ride during each Thunder Beach.
"We changed the name of the parade to the Kevin Kight Memorial Parade in his honor because he did so much for kids," said Diana Woods, one of the parade organizers.
Christina Kight said the name change means so much to her and her son. "He loved kids. He enjoyed Thunder Beach. He was never a biker, never rode the motorcycles, but he liked to look at them, and he loved talking to the different people."
For eight years, people have joined together to ride through Panama City Beach and raise money for children in the community.
"All of the money and all of the food stays on this beach. It goes from bridge to bridge, from the inner coastal to the Gulf. It does not leave this community, and the police distribute it throughout in the schools," said Woods
Perhaps the best thing for Woods and other bikers is watching Kight's son grow up over the years. "Seeing him today, it's amazing how their son has grown into such a good looking young man."
"I think over the years, it's just really starting to hit him truly what an impact Kevin had," said Christina Kight.
Kight's death is a tragedy the community will never forget but one that continues to bring so many together.
"They wrapped us up, and it was awesome. It was overwhelming, emotional. Yes, I am proud to live here," said Christina Kight.
This is the eighteenth year the motorcycle parade has raised money for local children, with the past eight years dedicated to Sergeant Kight.