RACE RECAP: Las Vegas Great Santa Run 5k | My Team Triumph Debut

A few months ago, I saw a great group of people at a local 5k.  They were pairing up to push a wheelchair through the race course.  That chair had a disabled child, who would of not had the chance to participate.  I watched them and liked their “vibe” and presence at the race.  That was in early October.

A few weeks later, a FB friend (Ryan) told me he was coming to town to participate in a local Halloween run and he was going to be part of that group.  That got my attention! I have known Ryan for years and when I see him that excited about something, I take notes.  In addition, I have another FB friend (Teri) who is involved.

For years, I wanted to be a part of a charity group.  I didn’t want to fundraise (not my thing) I wanted to participate in an event, where I could give back, on the spot.  I applied and was accepted into the group.  Ryan invited me to run an upcoming Half Marathon with him in April and I thought that would be my first race with TT.  Well, TT was in dire need of “Angels”, so I opted to register (despite my dislike of the Santa Run event, on a whole).

Bro and I arrived Saturday morning in Downtown Las Vegas (Fremont area).  Roads were closed off everywhere, so it was not very easy to get to our parking or meet up place, but we got there.

As a new “Angel” – we were given an orientation on the safety features of the chair. I met my Angel Partner, Kim and we waited for our Captain (the person who was in the chair).  Christopher arrived with him family, including his adorable brother, Mickey, who would be running with us.  Kim is an Angel Veteran so I was grateful for her expertise!  We opted to run a run/walk interval. This was all about Christopher (and his Brother) we could of walked the entire event.

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We had a very short walk to the Finish Line. Were instructed to start in the front and the RD would start us about 5 minutes before the official gun time.  Note: This was not a timed race.

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As soon as we started, I realized this was not going to be easy!  With my recent back pains, I hoped I wouldn’t let Kim down by not doing my share of the pushing.  Having Christophers brother with us was special!

This is my favorite picture of the morning.  Go #TeamChristopher!

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When Kim was pushing and I was keeping an eye on Christopher, his brother told me they wanted to go FAST.  So, I offered to Kim to sprint the last half mile to give Christopher a chance to go “fast”.

As we reached the 2.60 mark, I took over for the last time and turned the corner. What I saw ahead of me was a wall of Santa Suits.  The 1 mile walk was merging with us.  I knew at that point, I couldn’t sprint, but I could go as fast as I could.

Once, a gal cut in front of me and stopped in her tracks!  I almost ran into her and she would of landed in Christopher’s lap.  Luckily, that didn’t happen!

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Right behind me was Kim and Mickey.  We all received our medals, hugged and parted ways.  Now, I was waiting for Kirk to finish his 1mile walk. Yeah, you read that right – a WALK.  He has had a setback since RnRLV 10k, so he was gauging his hip and knee to see how it would feel.  He said it felt great!  YAY!

We walked back to the car and met up with Ryan and we headed our separate ways.

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I enjoyed being a part of this team and appreciate their warm welcome.  Hope to see everyone again in 2016!

Charlene L. Ragsdale – Las Vegas, NV
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