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9/11 Heroes Run To Be Held In State College

The 9/11 Heroes Run unites more than 50 communities each year, and it will now take place right in State College on September 11.

The Heroes Run will begin at 12:30 p.m. at the Bryce Jordan Center on the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, including a 5K run and a one-mile fun run/walk. Stellar athletic abilities are not required — runners (or walkers) of all ages and abilities are welcome, and anyone who wishes to pay tribute to the fallen is invited to register.

The run is hosted by the Travis Manion Foundation, an organization created on behalf of an LT who lost his life in Iraq while aiding wounded teammates. Manion was a wrestler while enrolled in the United States Naval Academy and won the Penn State Open wrestling tournament in 2003.

“The Manion family often drove to Penn State to watch Travis wrestle, so the family has close connections to our school,” said Penn State student and race director Laura Krause.

Manion’s words before final deployment, “If not me, then who?” represent exactly what the event seeks to inspire in participants. The run encourages participants to get on their feet and have fun, as well as take the time to thank local veterans and first responders. Perhaps the most important goal of the event is to unite the community in remembrance.

Since 9/11, ten Penn State alumni have lost their lives while serving our country. Penn State also has nearly 3,500 veterans, nearly 1,000 of them attending University Park.

“[Veterans] are a large portion of our school and they deserve this,” Krause said. “We will be the first 5K to directly come back and help Penn State.”

The largest team to register will gain several perks like participating in opening ceremonies, starting the race and thus becoming the face of the event, and carrying the American flag and names of the fallen throughout the race. Penn State’s swim team currently holds the lead for the largest registered team.

The foundation also offers veteran workshops, survivor services, and other volunteer opportunities for those who want to become further involved. Participants can register for the Heroes Run through September 7.

About the Author

Claire Fountas

Claire Fountas is the student life editor for Onward State, as well as a junior pursuing a double major in journalism and psychology. She lives in a suburb of Chicago and strongly disagrees with anyone who hates the Cubs or the Blackhawks (so, pretty much anyone at Penn State). You can follow her @ClaireFountas or email her at [email protected]

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