Rocky Fork Enterprise

Memorial Run to help children of fallen warriors

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Gahanna's Creekside will be the site of a 5K run/walk at 3 p.m. Saturday, June 7, to raise funds for children of fallen operations warriors.

The seventh annual Sgt. 1st Class Daniel B. Crabtree Memorial 5K is open to participants of all ages and abilities, with registration beginning at 2 p.m. at Creekside Plaza, 133 Mill St.

A U.S. Army Special Forces Green Beret, Crabtree was killed when a roadside bomb exploded near his vehicle while in a combat patrol in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom on June 8, 2006.

He was a member of Company B, 2nd Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group (Airborne), of the Ohio Army National Guard, when he was killed in action.

Crabtree's unit included a number of Gahanna police officers.

Before Crabtree was deployed to Iraq, the 31-year-old worked as a Cuyahoga Falls police officer. He also was a SWAT member, a husband and father.

Rocky Military, a division of Rocky Brands, is honoring Crabtree by sponsoring the annual 5K in his memory.

Rocky Military is a product line consisting of footwear products marketed to military personnel as a substitute for the government-issued military boots.

"We are honored to be part of this event that pays homage to one of our own, from the state of Ohio, who made the ultimate sacrifice fighting the ongoing War on Terror," said Kevin Carpenter, sales and marketing manager for Rocky Military.

As the title sponsor of the event, Rocky employees will lace up their shoes and participate in the event.

Race director Maj. Marshall Jackson said the 5K was created to honor Crabtree and other service members who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

"Every year we have around 200 participants, but this year our goal is to have 500," he said.

The cost to participate is $40 and includes a T-shirt.

Racers with the best times will receive additional awards.

All proceeds go toward the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which provides scholarships to the children of fallen special-operations warriors, including SEALs and Green Berets.

An after-party will be held immediately after the race at Old Bag of Nails Pub, 63 Mill St., where 10 percent of all food and beverages will go to the foundation.

For more information on the 5K, go online to crabtreememorialrun.org.

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