(Please click on each picture to read the captions)
Team Peace, Love, LAF
Julie Alston, Ragin Cornelius, Robin & Brody Hamil, Russell Harvey, Tracy Portwood, Bryan & Suzanne Alston
On a cold Sunday morning, November 15, 2015, a group of dedicated friends participated in the East Texas Half Marathon, to raise scholarship funds for the Lauren Alston Foundation. I can’t say enough about my group of friends…it moves me and humbles me that they want to help continue Lauren’s legacy of helping others. That they gave their time, energy, money, lots of sweat, a couple of tears and some pushed their bodies further than normal and some started with injuries. They came from Austin, Corrigan, Lufkin and Yoakum to participate in this run in Nacogdoches. This is the second year for Team Peace, Love, LAF. Ragin came to Bryan and I last year about making this a fundraiser run for LAF. We hope you will join us in November 2016.
Ragin and Russell were the two brave souls who participated in the half marathon…that is 13.1 miles folks. The race started at 7:30 am…but they had to be there about 1 hr earlier to park, warm up their legs and then race…on top of driving 30 minutes to get there. Ragin is a seasoned runner but was dealing with shin splints, from his training, before he even started the race…but he pushed himself those last few miles and finished. Russell just started running last year before this race/fundraiser. Russell ran the 5K last year but challenged himself and moved up to the half marathon this year. He enjoys running 8-9 miles most days but pushed through to complete his first half marathon…for Team P, L, LAF. I am so proud of these guys…they took on the hardest part…the bigger challenge!! They rock…they are awesome…they have huge hearts!!…and nice legs from running…lol.
Now us 5K’ers are another story…lol…we are walkers…not runners. We also aren’t early risers…especially on cold, rainy mornings…thank goodness the rain stopped before the Half’ers got started. The 5K race started at 7:45 am…but we had decided beforehand to have our “own” start at 8:30 am. For two reasons…we aren’t early risers…yes, I’m saying it again…and we wanted to finish sometime close to when Ragin and Russell would be finishing their Half. So Tracy, Brody, Robin, Bryan, I and Julie, our sister-in law, who was able to join us last minute…started our 3.1 mile walk or stroll. We enjoyed visiting with each other, cheering on the Half’ers we passed… who were running toward us on the route and we got to see Ragin and Russell whom we “high fived”…looking at the houses in the neighborhood we passed through and commenting on all the clothes thrown on the sides of the road. I guess some runners shed their clothes as they got hot and would later come back to get them. We could have had some really nice jackets, gloves, t-shirts and leg warmers had we picked up all the items we saw. Too bad there wasn’t any warm-up pants…cause someone in our group was walking in his fleecy pajama bottoms…I won’t name you Bryan Alston…and could have changed along the way…lol. We finished in under an hour…barely…but we weren’t in it for an “official” race time…just the company….6 across the line. We weren’t there but maybe 15-20 minutes when Ragin showed up across the finish line….Yay, 7 cross the line!! Then we were looking for Russell, who we knew was struggling just a bit that last mile. And because you never leave a man behind, Ragin went back to run with him across the line…the friendship, encouragement and Russell’s perseverance brought tears to our eyes…we all loudly cheered him on. YAY!!! All 8 of Team Peace, Love, LAF had finished…we were together and hugging it out. Again…I am so proud of this team!! And a “shout out”… of thanks… to our cheer team of Kathy, Elise, Sharron and Roy Dean!
Because of this Team and all of their gracious sponsors…22 fabulous Supporters from Texas, Florida, Alabama and even Japan…we raised $2135 for scholarships. Thank You…Thank You…Thank you all!!
We are so thankful to the Runners, Walkers and the Sponsors for your support. We hope to continue this fundraiser next year and would love for more people to join us…yes, you reading this. You can Run…Walk…Skip…Hula Hoop it…we don’t care…just join us…in mid November 2016…you know you want one of those cute Team t-shirts.
Our love to all…we are blessed by you. Happy Thanksgiving.