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Saturday, July 1, 2000 -- Windber, PA
J.I. and John Whalley Memorial Run
Story and photos by Don Parks

[Details] [Coverage]
Results: [5M Run OA] [By Class] [2M Walk OA] [By Class]
Pictures: [Set 1] [Set 2] [Set 3] [Set 4] [Set 5]
[Set 6] [Set 7] [Set 8] [Set 9] [Set 10] [Set 11]

Diane Cadwell
A fine morning for a walk through Windber
Just a little southeast of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, lies the peaceful little town of Windber. But on this first morning of the 2000 4th of July weekend, the streets where alive and bustling with runners and walkers of all ages. The 21st Annual J. Irving & John Whalley Memorial Run was about to begin. It was a picture perfect morning to remember the local father and son who had contributed so much to the community during their lives.

Starting off the morning's fun and exercise was a great crowd of walkers ready to tackle two miles of Windber's downtown streets. The familiar stride of Steve Bence took off fast as the race got underway. Doing their best to keep his pace were Alvin Harbaugh and Gary Young. However, their best speed walking wasn't enough to keep Bence from another victory.

Out, but not down
The competition was lucky... this year!
Harbaugh took second with a time of 16:58 to Bence's winning time of 16:30. "I can never catch the bugger. I used to keep up but he's too fast anymore," was Harbaugh's evaluation of the winner. Young took third place in 17:10 as he did his best to challenge for the lead.

Finishing fourth overall in the walk, and first among the females, was Diane Rugh with a time of 20:27.

The next race to get started had only one participant, but his efforts couldn't be matched by anyone in attendance. Fifteen-year-old Michael Adams was racing a handcycle that he was provided by the Hiram G Andrews Rehabilitation Center. Using this as training for the Johnstown City Marathon, Adams spun through the 5-mile course in 27:31, a little short of his sub-25 minute goal. But he was happy with his race, his first using the handcycle, and confident that he would have reached his goal had he not had mechanical trouble with one of the hand cranks.

Bob Schrock
Bob Schrock kicks it in for the really big finish
The 5-mile runners were next to take to the city streets where they would face a tough course through the rolling hills of Windber. After being pushed by the fast starting pace, Ryan Gleason soon took up the lead position and was able to hold off his rivals to take the win in 28:08. When asked about the win, Gleason's simple response was, "I had a good race, I'm happy."

Taking a little longer to sort things out, the finish line found Tom Deakins (28:27) grabbing the second place spot followed by Brian Neuhoff (28:38) in third.

The women's side of the field was dominated by the fleet running of Tracey Molnar. Her time of 33:17 was a full three minutes ahead of second place finisher Leanna Nastase. Nastase spent the better part of the race reeling in the competition as she moved up through the pack to finish in 36:17. Third place went to Jamie Wayandt (36:29) who had to out sprint Paula Bridges (36:31) at the finish.

4 & Under Race
The littlest of the little line up for their big race
The final race of the day was the always popular one-block Lollipop Race for the kids. In two-year age groups, from the 4-and-under tots to the almost teenage youngsters, their enthusiasm and big smiles were a win for all the spectators and participants, alike.

After all the racing everyone was treated to an elaborate spread of pizza, soda, kielbasa, hot dogs, chips, fruits, and much, much more (some of which you had to be 21 to consume) during the awards ceremony. All this was a wonderful end to a great morning of fun and racing. Special thanks for the good times go out to Denny Arnold, Gail Ankney and Dave "Dude" Petrilla. They couldn't have done it without the generous support of many, many community volunteers who's hard work was certainly appreciated by all.