TAPS RUN AND REMEMBER TEAM: HONORING OUR FALLEN MILITARY AT THE FIVE TRAILS HALF MARATHON ON SUNDAYSupporters and Surviving Families Run to Honor Our Fallen Military, Raise Funds for TAPS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – May 18, 2012
LEAVENWORTH, Kan. - For a special group of runners participating in the Five Trails Half Marathon on Sunday, May 20, every step is laced with memories and honors those who’ve paid the ultimate price in service to country.
Many of the runners are family members and friends of our fallen military heroes. The funds raised by the runners will help the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), the national organization that has provided comfort and care to more than 35,000 people grieving the deaths of America’s fallen military heroes and caregivers helping them since 1994.
Spectators on the course are encouraged to cheer for the TAPS runners, who wear distinctive red, white, and blue singlets and carry photos of the fallen service members they run to remember on the backs of their shirts.
Runners to watch:
-Alisa Mueller of Overland Park, Kan., will run in memory of her brother, Army Captain David “Jp” Thompson, who was killed January 29, 2010 in Afghanistan. Alisha shares, “Before he left for his third tour in Afghanistan, he said "Sis, it's time for you to start running." I snorted at my little brother and told him that he was crazy. Did I look like a runner?! But because of his request and in memory of him, I started running the month after he came home for the final time. And every time I have needed him near, I go run and he is right there beside me. Or maybe a little in front of me saying "Go faster."
-Ben Ringvelski of Parkville, Mo., will run the half marathon in memory of his battle buddy, Marine SSgt. Joseph "Joey D." D'Augustine, an EOD Technician who was killed in Southern Afghanistan on 27 March 2012. D'Augustine was an automatic rifleman and team leader in Ringvelski’s company while deployed to Iraq in 2004.
-Carol Bazemore of Tonganoxie, Kan., will run in memory of longtime family friend Army Colonel James Harrison, who died on May 6, 2007 in Afghanistan. Colonel Harrison graduated from West Point Academy with Carol’s husband. Colonel Harrison’s widow, Penni Harrison, will be on the sidelines cheering Bazemore on as she honors the memory of her husband.
- Geoff Hanson of Tonganoxie, Kan., will run in memory of US Army SGT. Ralph Mena Jr of Hutchinson, KS who died in Tikrit, Iraq on May 4, 2010.
-Rachel Minnis of Leavenworth, Kan., will run in memory of U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. James William Hubbard Jr. of Leavenworth. Sgt. Major Hubbard died May 21, 2009, from service-connected leukemia while serving in Iraq.
- Amber Palmer of Montrose, Mo., will run in memory of Arm Staff Sgt. Gary Collins. Sgt. Collins was killed November 8, 2003 in Iraq.
More information about the race is available at: http://www.fivetrailshalfmarathon.com/
About the TAPS Run & Remember Team The TAPS “Run and Remember” team began with two runners, who ran the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, DC in 2000. One of them was Marie Campbell, who lost her husband, US Air Force Sergeant Dee “Soup” Campbell, in 1996 when a terrorist bomb took the lives of 19 airmen at the Khobar Towers housing complex in Saudi Arabia. Campbell is the director of the TAPS Run and Remember team, and she organizes hundreds of runners around the nation annually who run in memory of our fallen heroes. Get more information about upcoming races and team activities at www.taps.org
About TAPSSince its founding in 1994 by bereaved military families, TAPS has helped more than 35,000 surviving family members and caregivers supporting families coping with a military death. TAPS provides peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, seminars, case work assistance, and a 24/7 resource and information help line for all who have been affected by a death in the Armed Forces. Services are provided free of charge. For more information go to www.taps.org or call the toll-free resource and information help line at 800.959.TAPS (8277).
Media ContactMedia seeking to talk with TAPS runners or get more information about TAPS may contact Ami Neiberger-Miller, office 202.588.8277, firstname.lastname@example.org
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