The Rim Country had its usual strong showing at the annual Pat’s Run with 17 local residents traveling April 17 to Tempe to participate in the event, which drew a record crowd of 28,000 participants.
Although the competition was fierce, 45-year-old Carolyn Fruth — a mother of two and a Boston Marathon finisher last year — showed well, finishing 11th in her age/sex division in a very commendable time of 31.03.
Her clocking was also the fastest among all the locals to enter.
Chris Harold, 34, a former Payson High School and collegiate offensive lineman carried the banner of former guards and tackles everywhere well, lumbering over the 4.2-mile course in 33:30.
Others who broke the 40-minute mark were Maureen Griffin (36:19), Tiffany Harold (38:44), Farrell Poer (34:14), Henry Thomason (37:39) and former town councilman Tim Fruth (36:53).
The 4.2-mile run got off to a roaring start at 7 a.m. just east of Sun Devil Stadium on the campus of Arizona State University and ended on the 42-yard line on Frank Kush Field inside the stadium. A children’s race of .42 miles was also held. The significance of the number is that Pat Tillman wore “42” when he starred in football for the Arizona State University Sun Devils.
Tillman turned down a $3.6 million contract with the Arizona Cardinals to join the military. He spent a year in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom and then was deployed to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom.
The former Sun Devil great and Pac-10 defensive MVP was killed in action by friendly fire on April 22, 2004.
The Pat Tillman Foundation, which reaps the benefits of Pat’s Run, was founded after his death.