MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C.-- -- II Marine Expeditionary Force Marines injured in the global war on terrorism and “Run for the Warriors” race coordinators judged more than 70 artistic entries for the T-shirt design for the upcoming Run for the Warriors.
According to Robin Kelleher, race director, the children of local schools were asked to draw pictures of what the sacrifices of the Marines and Sailors mean to them. They replied on paper with pens, pencils and every crayon in the box.
“With most of the entries, you couldn’t even tell they were drawn by kids,” said Lance Cpl. Johnny Burra of Rochester, N.Y., an injured Marine who helped judge the entries. “They draw better than I can.”
“It was tough to pick just one design,” continued Burra. “They were all very well drawn-out.”
In the end, the Marines were forced to pick a winner, who would then have their design reproduced hundreds of times as the race T-shirt icon. However, said Kelleher, they also chose a close runner up, whose design will grace T-shirts sold on race day.
With this benchmark decision out of the way, Kelleher is now focusing her attention on promoting “unit challenges,” and encouraging commands around the base to sign up for a 10k, a 5k, or a 1 mile fun run to show their support. According to Kelleher, things are going well.
“We have a number of battalions who want to run as a group and would be interested in challenging other units to run as a group,” she said. “We noticed a couple of the (Officer’s Wives Club) board members challenged the entire board to run the race, so it’s turning into a big community and family event.”
“We have a unit who called from Iraq who wanted to make sure they can be in the race when they get back,” she beamed.
“We’re slowly trying to get corporate sponsorship to try to raise as much money as we can,” she added, noting all proceeds from the race will be funneled through the United Services Organization, with a special fund set aside for those injured in the war to anticipate the needs of the service members and their families.
“We really want to get people registered. Unfortunately, we can’t discount as a group, but there are ideas of getting people to sponsor the registration fees,” said Kelleher.
After the race May 20, special recognition will be given to those who were injured in the war. “It’s going to be a kind of a welcome home,” said Kelleher. “We know a lot of these Marines and sailors never got the big reunion we worked so hard to give the rest of the unit.”
For more information about the event, log on to www.runforthewarriors.org.