By Rob Potter
ROCK HILL June 22, 2004 Hundreds of runners and walkers participated in Saturdays 12th Annual Walter A. Rhulen Memorial 5K Rock Hill Run and Ramble.
A total of 510 people finished the 3.1-mile course that winds around Lake Louise Marie.
Proceeds from the race, which was renamed in honor of Walter A. Rhulen following his death in 1998, benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of America. At the post-race awards ceremony, race chairperson Suzy Rhulen-Loughlin, who is the daughter of Walter A. Rhulen, announced that the 2004 event had raised $25,000.
We had a really great event this year, Rhulen-Loughlin said to the crowd gathered for the ceremony. Thank you all for your participation and for helping us to fight leukemia and other blood related cancers.
Rhulen-Loughlin handed out awards to the top three individual runners who raised the most money in pledges. The top fundraiser was Myriam Loor, who brought in $1,000 in pledges. Gladys Nieves was second with $930 and Doris Motl was third with $918.
The race was won by Gary Dennis of Gouldsboro, Pa. He completed the course in 15 minutes and 53 seconds.
This was the first time Dennis competed in the Rhulen Memorial 5K Run and Ramble. He heard about the race while running in last weekends Orange Classic 10K in Middletown.
I just had a good day, Dennis said. The first mile was tough, I probably took it too fast. I was able to run better that second and third mile.
Dennis added that he would probably be back next year to defend his title.
Andy Latincsics of Newton, NJ was second in 16:27 and Raymond Revell of Campbell Hall finished third with a time of 16:52.
While Dennis was a first-time winner, the womens division featured a repeat champion. For the second straight year, Heidi Everett-Powers of Warwick was the first woman to cross the finish line. She ran the course in 18:49.
That last mile I ran fast, its a nice gradual downhill run to the finish, Everett-Powers said. It was kind of a short week since I ran the Orange Classic last weekend. But I ran a pretty good race and Im happy with my time.
Finishing a close second to Everett-Powers was Suzanne LaBurt of Greenwood Lake. LaBurt ran the course in 18:55, just six seconds behind Everett-Powers. Jean Norton of Wurtsboro was third in 19:18.
The Weight Watchers of Sullivan County team took home the first place trophy in the team division. The Weight Watchers squad had 125 runners in the event. By following the Weight Watcher program, those men and women have lost a total of 2,199 pounds.
This is a great event, said Beth Weiss, a Sullivan County representative of Weight Watchers. We enjoy being out here running and promoting good health. Were happy to help raise money to fight leukemia and lymphoma.
After the race, Jon Zanger provided musical entertainment for the crowd of participants and their family members and friends. Zanger played the guitar and sang several popular songs from the past three decades.
The Catskill Regional Medical Center (CRMC) Mobile Health Unit was on hand throughout the day. Staff members performed dozens of blood pressure checks and diabetes tests and provided runners and spectators with other health information.
While the runners enjoyed themselves and raised $25,000 for a great cause, there was a some sadness at the event. The race was held only four days after a tragic automobile accident claimed the lives of Monticello High School students Sierra Cerrone, Maximilian Gonzalez and Ashley Morgan.
Our whole community is grieving, Rhulen-Loughlin said. We are really thinking of them today.
Just prior to the awards ceremony, Rhulen-Loughlins daughter Juliette, one of Cerrone and Morgans classmates, asked everyone to bow their heads for a moment of silence to remember and honor Cerrone, Gonzalez and Morgan.
In addition, several of the runners in the race wore t-shirts with the names of the students and messages of love printed on them.
Note: Please see more race results in Fridays issue.