FORT BLISS, Texas - A total of 97 runners participated in the 10K Post Championship Run and 5K Turkey Trot, held at the Soto Gym, Nov. 19.
It was a very cold morning and the runners were rubbing their hands to keep warm. Many waited in anticipation for the race to begin. Each came for different reasons.
To support others
Master Sgt. John Blue, a student at the Fort Bliss Sergeant Major Academy, participated in the 5K came to lend support to his peer Master Sgt. Julie Guerra, also a student at the academy.
Although Blue came as a supporter, he too has a story of his own.
“I'm always excited to run and have a good time,” said Blue. “I lost my right leg below the knee Jan. 27, 2007, in Baghdad, Iraq due to an Explosively Formed Projectile.”
He has been training on things like bike riding, running and swimming to keep in shape so that he can keep up with his soldiers, said Blue.
“It's a way for me to go out and burn some energy, clear my head and think about stuff and keep me focused on other things,” said Blue. “It's not that I dwell on what happened, but giving myself something to strive for like a race or an event like this, it keeps me focused and gives me something to look forward to,” he said.
Even though he lost his leg, he competed in the 5K Turkey Trot’s 35-39 age groups and won the men’s championship.
“If you’re injured and you're nervous about participating, you never know until you try,” said Blue. “Don't give yourself an excuse on why you can’t do it; give yourself an excuse on why you can do it,” he said.
Win the Commanders Cup
Major Trisha B. Stavinoha, with William Beaumont Army Medical Center, said she was there so that WBAMC could win the Commanders cup.
“And I think we will, we did very well, so at least for the year, William Beaumont should win for our division,” said Stavinoha.
She won the Lady’s Champion age group 34 and under and was very happy that as a group WBAMC won the Team Champion for the 2010 10K run with 24 points.
Reclaim her running ability.
Andrea K. Compton, an Army spouse said, “I messed up my ankle two months ago.” So it’s a reentry back to attempting to run again. She ended up taking second place in the women’s 34 and under 5K Turkey Trot.
These runners came with a purpose of their own and many accomplished it, but in the end they said they had fun just being there.