The inaugural Move with the Forces 5K Run/Walk was a great success. The Veteran’s Day weekend event at Soldier Field was an inspiring way to pay tribute to Chicago’s veterans. The weather was chilly and windy, but the energetic walkers and runners braved the high winds to run for a great cause. The spectators cheering them on enjoyed the sunshine and the numerous tents set up to watch the race organized by Illinois True Hero in partnership with Helping a Hero.org.
Before the race started, the runners were treated to the singing of the National Anthem. The crowd also had a fun warm- up with NBC Chicago Nonstop host Whitney Reynolds. The spectators got to eat and drink before the race with food from Domino’s Bakery and Lettuce Entertain You. Vitamin Water supplied water to thirsty participants in the race. At 9 AM, the runners ran wtih music from Amy Grant blaring.
After about a half hour, the runner started returning, triumphant that they finished the race. People as diverse as veterans, grandparents, and children all ran or walked in the race. After the race was completed, medals were awarded in four categories. The overall male winner was Dan Cushman. Kristen Kostka won on the women’s side. Christopher O’ Brien and Patrick Wiggins performed the best among veterans and active-duty soldiers respectively. The results of the race, however, weren’t as important as the goal of the race, raising funds to build a house for wounded veterans. Volunteer committee member Jacqui Horton organized an inspiring race that brought people together and honored Illinois’ brave veterans.