The University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Veterans Club is proud of this year’s 5k Ruck Run held Oct. 18. Runners were happy to support veterans.
This year, they donated money raised to Never Forgotten Honor Flight, an organization that takes veterans to war memorials.
Amanda Jennings, the social media organizer for the UWSP Veterans Club, was happy to spread the word about the third annual run.
She said many people were enticed by the cadences played while tabling in the Dreyfus University Center.
“A lot of people want to help out and participate,”Jennings said. “I know people who said they could not participate in the actual run, but they want to help with the set up and take down.”
Joshua Fager, the president of the Veteran’s Club, said it is amazing how so many people want to support veterans.
“Anyone can walk 3.1 miles. Most people are going that distance by walking to and from class,” Fager said. “This is nothing compared to what veterans have to do.”
Fager stressed that many veterans made sacrifices so participants could enjoy the freedom to go on a run.
Leah Lueck participated in the run for a veteran in her life and personal reasons. Lueck said she began a weight loss journey last September, and her running time has improved ever since.
“My grandfather passed away 9 years ago, and he was a veteran of the Air Force. I had my heart set on running in the Veteran Run 5k in honor of him,” Lueck said.
Lueck triumphed when she crossed the finish line in 25 minutes and 30 seconds, a record for her. She said the strongest feeling she felt crossing the finish line was accomplishment.
David Chrisinger teaches a First Year Seminar Class to veteran students and decided to participate in the run to connect with students outside the classroom.
Throughout the run, he was pushing his two sons in a stroller, but was amazed by one of his students.
“My favorite part of the run was following one of my students, Matt, who decided to run the 5k with a 40-pound ruck on his back,” Chrisinger said. “ I was so impressed with his strength and endurance.”
Chrisinger ran in many larger runs like a 50 mile ultramarathon, so he is not a stranger to competition. He said the Veterans Run had a different vibe about it.
“With 29 runners, there wasn’t much jockeying for position, which is pretty common in larger races,” Chrisinger said. “There was this sense not so much that we were racing each other, but that we were all in it together, going for a run for a good cause.”