08/22/13 Running a race is hard enough but can you imagine running the Blueberry Stomp a 15K (9.3 miles) run in full firefighter gear? Plymouth Firefighters John Pasley, Daren Miller and Adam Bare along with Walkerton Firefighter Jason Lambright, Mishawaka Firefighter Chad Kinney, Hunter Sharp from the Koontz Lake FD, Rochester Firefighter Justin Melton and Tyler Heckaman of the Penn Twp. Fire Department will be gearing up to run the 15K Blueberry Stomp on Labor Day to raise money for Riley Children’s Hospital.
Funds raised will be designated for the “Magic Castle Cart” which makes weekly trips through the halls of the hospital providing gifts and activities for in-patient children. Pasley noted that on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day the children visit the Magic Castle and can select a gift for their parent. The fundraiser will also provide money for the Palliative Care program, a support program for children and their families as they face the challenges of a life-limiting diagnosis.
In 2012 John Pasley started the fundraiser and ran the race by himself in full gear adding roughly an additional 30 pounds. He completed the race in 1hour and 50 minutes with the assistance of his support team. Pasley stated that he burned anywhere from 2,500 – 3,000 calories and lost 14 -16 pounds.
As part of this year’s Riley Gear Run, firefighter Pasley will wear a special fireman’s helmet that he sent down to the hospital and had it signed. There are 77 signatures with the biggest majority of them being children currently being treated at the hospital. A few staff members also signed the helmet including the CEO of Riley Children’s Hospital.
Firefighters have placed dozens of fire boots throughout the area with information on the fundraiser. Folks are invited to place their donations in the boots. Boots maybe found at Christo’s Family Dining, Ponderosa and Plymouth BP Gas Station just to name a few. If you would like to mail your donation, make your checks payable to “Supporting Riley Kids” and mail it to the Plymouth Fire Department at 111 North Center Street or you may make an online donation by visiting www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/rileygearrun.
For updates or to follow along with the Race for Riley you may find them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/riley.gearrun