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Articles

Schriever runner rallies for Crawford House

Release Number: 010606

A former 1st Space Operations Squadron commander here is encouraging everyone at Schriever to donate their legs for a good cause.

The Pikes Peak Road Runners Club is scheduled to sponsor a five-kilometer run and three-kilometer walk at Prospect Lake in Memorial Park July 2 at 7 a.m. PPRR will donate all proceeds from the run to the Colorado Veterans Coalition’s Crawford House, a center in Colorado Springs that aids veterans in need, retired Col. Jack Anthony said.

“I’m really hoping the military gets behind this run to honor and support needy veterans in southern Colorado,” Mr. Anthony said. “The residents and staff of Crawford House aren’t necessarily runners, and they’re curious as to how wildly enthusiastic we can get about their cause.”

The Crawford House is named after William Crawford, an Army veteran of World War II who received a Congressional Medal of Honor who worked as a janitor at the U.S. Air Force Academy during the 1970s.

“We met Mr. Crawford bright and early Monday and showed him the page in question from (a book about World War II), anticipation and doubt on our faces,” wrote Col. James Moschgat, now Vice Commander at the Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala. “He starred at it for a few silent moments and then quietly uttered something like, ‘Yep, that’s me.’

“Mouths agape, my roommate and I looked at one another, then at the book, and quickly back at our janitor. Almost at once we both stuttered, ‘Why didn’t you ever tell us about it?’ He slowly replied after some thought, ‘That was one day in my life and it happened a long time ago,’” Colonel Moschgat wrote.

Mr. Crawford’s widow, Eileen Crawford, will fire the starting gun for the event. Crawford House residents will man water stands around the park, Mr. Anthony said.

PPRR’s goal for this run is to raise $6,000 for Crawford House, based on 500 people attending and paying $12 to run or walk. Participants will receive a commemorative T-shirt with a Veterans’ Home Run emblem displayed on it. Crawford House officials said they would use the contributions for safety lighting, Internet capability to assist veterans with job searches, and assistance with clothing and transportation to help veterans find and hold jobs.

“These are folks who served our military, and perhaps we can honor them with the run and our heartfelt commitment to help these veterans regain their confidence and health,” Mr. Anthony said.

Colorado Springs businesses and non-profit institutions have stepped up to sponsor the event. So has Schriever’s 56 Council, which donated $100 May 30 to sponsor the race. The sponsors’ contributions cover the overhead costs such as shirts, posters, portable restrooms and police officers.

Units on base are also getting involved.

“The 4th Space Operations Squadron kids are forming a co-ed team,” Mr. Anthony said. Lt. Col. Gary Henry, 50th Mission Support Group Commander, has also said many of his people will run.

“Schireiver is a Warfit base, and there are many folks I see running who can showcase that readiness to the community and our veterans” Mr. Anthony said.

PPRR, whose board of officers includes three Air Force veterans and one Army veteran, has waived its normal fee for planning and coordinating the event.

“We’re just doing this out of our hearts,” Mr. Anthony said. “Whatever’s left over (from the sponsors’ donations and registrations) goes to the vets. A lot of people are stepping up—there’s no cash register going ‘ka-ching’ in the background—it all goes to the Crawford House staff and residents.”

PPRR’s long-term goal is to make the Veterans Home Run an annual event.

“This is the chance for our active-duty and retired folks who enjoy physical fitness to get out and support the local veterans in need,” he said.