By Gunner Young/campus editor
NW Veterans’ Success Center is hosting the ninth annual 9/11 memorial 5K run/walk to honor those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.
NW veterans counselor Billy Alexander is the organizer of the event and a veteran.
“For me personally, and for the veteran student population, service is who we are and what we’re about,” Alexander said. “We, as veterans, try to connect with our first responder brothers and sisters because we are all on the front line.”
There will be a memorial speech by coordinator of fire service training Steve Keller prior to the run.
“[The speech] is commemorating the somberness of the mood and also encourages connectedness and unity among everyone,” Alexander said.
The fire safety training program and the criminal justice program are both involved in the event with coordinators from both programs attending.
“I think we’ve done this for several years now. It’s an opportunity for staff and students to come together and remember [9/11] and how it changed our lives,” Keller said.
Police academy cadets will also be participating in the event in honor of the first responders that lost their lives during 9/11.
While there are many departments involved in the race, the event is open to all students, faculty and staff. Katie Shroud, student assistant for the Veteran Success Center, said she was proud to be a part of the department that is hosting the 5K.
“I think it’s a good thing to be able to contribute in the honoring of 9/11 victims,” Stroud said.
For Alexander, the event is all about connectedness and unity among students and respect for the fallen heroes of 9/11.
It’s just a way to memorialize those who were lost on 9/11 and also an opportunity to connect and unify people, especially in this day and age,” Alexander said.“Unification and connecting with others, and letting people know that they do exist, they do matter and they do make sense. The sacrifices are real.”
The 9/11 memorial 5K hosted by the Veterans Success Center is on Sept. 11, 7-10 a.m. Participants meet in the parking lot outside of WSTU and will go to Marine Creek Lake Trail for the run.