Remembering fallen veterans

July 15, 2010

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By Timm Lovitt

For the past two years Edmonds Community College (EdCC) has been conducting the Freedom Run to remember those who have fallen in the global war on terror, as well as inspire people to become physically active. Participants walk, run, paddle, cycle, hit the gym (15 minutes in the gym count as 1 mile), and conduct any other physical activity that could be measured, one mile for every service member that has been killed in Afghanistan or Iraq. 

This year marked the first time that the competition was open to other groups. EdCC invited participating institutions to form groups and compete against them as they raced towards the goal of 5,390 miles (the number of service members killed at the time). Participating institutions hailed from all over the state and included groups from both public and private universities, community colleges, trade schools, and even a team from the Washington Department of Veterans Affairs (WDVA). 

The winning team turned out to be the group from Seattle University. The winners were awarded the Freedom Cup for their feat and had their institution’s name inscribed on the perpetual trophy that will be passed on as new competitions are completed. The next Freedom Run will begin on Veterans Day, November 11.   

The Freedom Run was created by a New York City firefighter shortly after Sept. 11, 2001. After enlisting in the National Guard, he was deployed to Afghanistan, and while there, he decided to do something to remember everyone that was lost that day. Three years ago Club Vet (EdCC student Veteran club) brought the tradition to Washington State and changed it to its current format.  

Timm Lovitt is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in public administration at Seattle University.