The 2nd Annual Fighting Red 5K: A Race to End Blood Cancer took place on Saturday September 13th. We have a follow up from Race Director Colin Hall.
The second Fighting Red 5K race was a great success. The weather was cool and pleasant and we had a great turnout.
Before runners left the starting line, Deedra Wilson from Fox16 kicked things off with a few facts about blood cancers. Acute Myeloid Leukemia survivor Leslie Harris spoke about her battle with cancer and her triumphs
Runners, spectators, and supporters released red balloons in honor of survivors, those currently fighting, and those whom we have lost.
Preacher and runner Britt Skarda from Pulaski Heights United Methodist church gave the blessing.
Another brave blood cancer survivor, Teecumpsy Wiggins gave the countdown and the runners were off on a very cool and pleasant morning. It was a bit cloudy and breezy but the temperature was just about perfect for a run.
Richard Vaughn took the wheelchair division with a time of 28:56. Twenty-six time marathoner Richard does a lot of work for Leukemia awareness and fundraising. You can check out his story on his website.
Some lady no one in Little Rock knows of by the name Leah Thorvilson took overall female at 17:47.
It is always great to have Richard and Leah at a race. They will not freely admit it, but they both have a rare ability to inspire others.
Jeffrey Grove of Benton won the top male overall at a time of 18:58.
Blood cancers are the second leading killer of kids in the U.S. With so many children effected by blood cancers, it was great to see some parents pushing strollers out in full force. In particular my friend Brittany Wilson Shinn who recently donated her cord blood. With proceeds from this race going to the UAMS Cord Blood Bank of Arkansas, her participation is especially meaningful.
We had over 170 people sign up as runners, virtual runners, or making a donation, up from 145 last year.
Forty-six potential life savers were swabbed and added to the national bone marrow registry list.
We haven’t added up the proceeds going to the UAMS Cord Blood Bank of Arkansas; however, you cannot put a price on awareness and random acts of kindness.
Special thanks to Gearhead Outfitters, Cord Blood Bank of Arkansas committee, deletebloodcancer.org, Mac’s Race Timing, and all our sponsors.
Thank you all again,
Keep fighting, donating, and swabbing!
Photos from the run will be posted on the Arkansas Outside Facebook page later this morning.