I went out to Fletcher Park this afternoon to watch the VeteRAN Jam 5k. I took some pictures with my phone, they’re not great but I’ve included them below (click on any picture to see a larger version).
FROM CORRESPONDENT VICTOR DOSTROW WHO RAN THE RACE
PTSD is epidemic. About a third of returning soldiers have severe symptoms, but well less than half seek assistance. A VA statistical analysis found that, on average, 22 veterans committed suicide every day in 2010. Among military personnel on active duty, suicide deaths now outpace war zone deaths. Many of those deaths were related to PTSD. PTSD is epidemic.
This was a first time race created in memory of Cpl. Joshua Alexander McArdle, who succumbed last year to the demons of PTSD. It was clear that much love and sweat was put into this event. Encouragingly, I am led to understand that turnout exceeded expectations. The gun was preceded, appropriately, by Presentation of Colors. The race was well organized and well marshaled. It was also hot, which is not surprising for late June with a 2 PM start. The first mile was around the park, and there was no shade. Did I mention that it was hot? I believe that T.C. Roberson, from which Mr. McArdle was a graduate, was well represented, and I had the impression that many of the fastest runners may have had an association with the school. Kudos to them for supporting their alumnus. And, kudos to the organizers for a well run event for a good cause. I’ll be back.
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