Monday, May 31, 2010

Running in tribute -- times 2

I started off my holiday weekend by participating in the Grey Ribbon Crusade Walk/Run-A-Thon, a 5-kilometer race to honor the late Dubuque Senior High coach Jim Boughton and to help others in their fight against brain cancer.

Coach Boughton, 56, lost his six-month battle to brain cancer earlier this month. His death is a loss not only to his family and the Senior High community, but to the Dubuque running community overall.According to Jim Leitner's story in Sunday's TH, the event drew 496 runners, and that could make it the largest field for an inaugural race in Dubuque. That's a great tribute to Coach Boughton and everyone involved in organizing this race on relatively short notice.

The race started in the Mystique Casino parking lot and took runners along the Dubuque floodwall and back. I ran -- raced would not be the word for it -- the event with friend Dennis Healy, Jim's long-time colleague and friend. Dennis, immensely popular around Senior -- he was commencement speaker for the umpteenth time on Sunday -- had to expend extra energy acknowledging all the greetings directed his way during the event.

Dennis' retirement, just a few days away, means the loss of two popular distance running coaches and teachers from the Senior community.

That the race occurred one day before the 13th anniversary of my mother's death -- to brain cancer -- had me running in tribute to two special people.

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