Tony had an idea back in 2002, to mark 9/11 with something memorable, lest we forget: a dinner? a ceremony? a book dedicated to KC’s connection? No, we thought a Run would be the best choice. So we take a drive, and find that 24-Hour Fitness was interested. A 5K, or Half, or….no, something unique: measure out a one-mile course and see how many miles you could cover in 9 hours and 11 minutes! And start at 12:00 noon!
So, we planned it for 2003, limited by a parking lot that could be stretched to just 3/4 mile. Tony took the main lead, and about 60 people showed up, many with name tags on their backs to remember some friend who died within the Towers. In 2004, it doubled, and again in 2005.
Then, we got an Air Force base in Afghanistan to join in and run at the same time (8:30pm, their time). At one point we built to over 600 runners here and 2000 runners in Bagram. The original beneficiary was Salvation Army, who were the first respondents to Fallen Towers. New runners and sponsors appeared, run-sites changed, weather was always unpredictable, but we kept on keeping on, as an unpaid pet project.
Having become a mobile DJ/Race Announcer and Event Planner since 1980, I took the “9/11 Run” to heart and promoted it throughout the years. Both Tony and I have paying jobs, but this was our baby, and have not given it up yet! Its special-ness keeps people coming back year after year, even from all around the world. Lots of fun, lots of work, a bit of worry, new additions each year, lots of interesting stories, all for what reason? It just needs to be done.