CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — After losing her husband in the line of duty, Amber Oberheim has made it her mission to change the way the world sees police officers.
It’s been nearly 10 months since Officer Chris Oberheim was shot and killed while responding to a domestic disturbance call. Shortly after, Amber started Peacemaker Project 703 to honor and respect police officers and to raise awareness about the everyday issues officers face on the job.
Chris Oberheim’s badge number was 703 and his favorite Bible verse was Matthew 5:9, which talks about peacemakers.
“Our foundation vision is to promote the positive regard for law enforcement,” Amber said. “I do believe that without some degree of law and order and respect for authority, our great county is going to suffer.”
One of the things Peacemaker Project 703 has done was organize an honor parade for police officers. Amber said the parade was held “so the people in our community and surrounding communities could come out and support these folks and let them know how much we love and respect them.”
They’ve also engaged with state lawmakers to push for harsher penalties for those who commit crimes against police officers.
Currently, they’re working toward providing emotional support for officers, including therapy and counseling for central Illinois officers dealing with trauma and other emotions brought on by the job. They’ve acquired a police therapy dog named Obie to help in that regard.
People who would like to support Peacemaker Project 703 with a donation can visit their website.
People can also support Peacemaker Project 703 by attending the first ever Champaign Police vs. Champaign Fire charity hockey game. The game starts at 7 p.m. and will be held at the University of Illinois Ice Arena. Amber and her daughters will drop the ceremonial first puck.
Admission to the game will be free, but all proceeds from the event will go to Peacemaker Project 703. An autographed Chicago Bears Dan Hampton jersey will be raffled off as part of the event.