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    Small town hosts international run

    Small town hosts international run

    Photo By Sgt. Uriah Walker | Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment and 12th Regiment, Japanese Ground...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Uriah Walker 

    5th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment   

    SELAH, Wash. – U.S. Service Members and Japanese forces participating in Rising Thunder, a bilateral training exercise held at Yakima Training Center, enjoyed a friendly race in the local community, Saturday.

    The “Apple Juice Capital of the World” hosted its 6th annual Base Race half-marathon and 5K. The race drew over 300 runners from as far away as California.

    The race brings people from all walks of life together to raise awareness of those suffering from PTSD. Money raised from the run will benefit The Soldiers Project dedicated to providing free, confidential psychological services to US military veterans and their loved ones who have served at any time after September 11, 2001.

    In addition to the support of veteran services, the race also remembers fallen service members with photos and names at each mile marker along the route. Mile marker one featured Selah’s own Army Capt. Aaron Blanchard who was killed in a rocket attack in Pul-E-Alam, Afghanistan, April 23, 2013. Laura Schactler, Blanchard’s mother, stood over his mile marker cheering on the racers and giving high fives.

    “Any chance that I have to talk about Aaron - to remember his sacrifice that he made for his country – I would not want to miss that opportunity,” Schactler said. “All Gold Star parents fear their child being forgotten.”

    Selah Parks and Recreation Manager David Mullen, this year’s race director, was responsible for coordinating all of the different organizations that come together to make this race successful – vendors, contractors, city staff and YTC.

    The Base Race was scheduled to coincide with Pacific Pathways training at YTC to include Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment and Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces.

    “We think that it’s important that the race is an international event and the Japanese Soldiers can come out and experience the city of Selah,” Mullen said. “This community has an enormous veteran population so it’s very important for the city of Selah to wrap their arms around Yakima Training Center and let them know we’re here for them.”

    Twenty-six year old Colby Nixon, a medical student at Pacific Northwest University, was the first half-marathon racer across the line with a time of 1:19:25, nearly 15 seconds ahead of the next runner.

    Nixon said that he was drawn to the race because of how well organized it was and to support bringing awareness to PTSD.



    Date Taken: 09.17.2016
    Date Posted: 09.18.2016 01:34
    Story ID: 209920
    Location: SELAH, WA, US 

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