Share |

Saturday, September 29, 2007 -- Clarksburg, WV
FBIRA Jerry Dove Memorial 5K
MAGP Sprint #8
(iPO Event Id#: 10048)

2007: [Photos] [Details] [Coverage] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]

Coverage: [2001] [2002] [2003] [2004] [2005] [2006]

Hero Remembered; New Hero Honored

Story and photos by Julie Black

Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Long before the days of dramatic Forensic Investigation type shows such as CSI Miami, Special Agents for the FBI and police force have been tracking real criminals for decades.

Jerry Dove was one of those people.

An accomplished young man earning degrees from Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia, and West Virginia University in Morgantown, WV, he served as a Special Agent (SA) for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) of Miami until he was killed on April 11, 1986. Dove was just 30 years old.

According to the FBI Hall of Honor, a high-speed chase ensued when the Agents attempted to stop a car that was believed to be the suspect vehicle in a series of violent bank and armored car robberies. When the Agents in three FBI vehicles succeeded in stopping the car, the suspects emerged firing their shoulder weapons. The agents returned fire and were engaged in an intense gunfight for five minutes.

Sadly, during the resultant gun battle, Dove was killed along with his partner Ben Grogan. Five other Agents on the scene were injured.

Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
The two bank robbers were killed. To date, the event remains the only incident in FBI history wherein two of its agents were killed in the same confrontation.

As a result of the unforgettable battle, Dove has been remembered for his actions as a Special Agent in many ways.

The FBI holds an annual memorial service on the anniversary of what became known as "The Miami Shootout" in North Miami Beach, Florida. The events leading up to and including the April 11 shootout were adapted into the NBC made-for-television movie, In The Line Of Duty: The FBI Murders in 1988.

In Clarksburg, WV, the Federal Bureau of Investigation Recreation Association (FBIRA) sponsors an annual 5K run and walk on Jerry Dove Drive to honor the West Virginia native, turned national hero.

Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Driving up to a security gate check-in point is always interesting whether it's the FBI CJIS Division Center, or a camp site at the beach. One can never been too prepared to whip out the important papers.

Greeted by two or three tough looking subjects in uniform, I quickly whipped out the camera lens. "Um, I'm here to take pictures of the race... please?" I peered out from under my 10 year old beat up baseball cap and muttered so as not to blow them away with early morning coffee breath. "Oh, okay Miss. Park right over there." He said with a smile, appearing a bit less foreboding than a few seconds before.

Fog rolled into the valley and the day felt a little brisk and fall-like. Judging from the clear skies I saw on the Interstate, I knew the cool breezes wouldn't last. It was going to get hot out on the pavement, and once again, I was wishing that I didn't wear so much black.

Lisa Vincent Stout greeted me with a hearty handshake and smile. Her race crew was bustling, preparing for post-race activities as over 175 walkers and runners stretched, talked, and milled about. The ceremonies began with a prayer and the national anthem sung live. Miles of Smiles timing gave the thumbs up, and it was time to get things underway.

Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
Jerry Dove 5K Photo by Julie Black
The 5K is part of the 10-race 2007 Morgantown Area Grand Prix Sprint Series. MAGP racers were there in full force including Jim Banks, Joey Heron, Larry Taylor, and Cindy Goodwin among others.

During the very first FBI Jerry Dove 5K back in 2001, Larry Taylor and Joey Heron placed first and second. "I wasn't sure if we were going to be able to do it again." Joey remarked after he finished the run. "I was being pushed, but I was able to pull away.""

Just like 6 years earlier, Joey had taken 2nd place overall (19:21). But, where did Larry place? Larry Taylor lead the pack and finished 1st in 17:07. Although Larry resides in Fayetteville, a good few hours away from the Morgantown area that is, he drives to every MAGP event aiming to become the overall winner of both series. Local Richard Everley Jr. placed 3rd in 19:28.

Naomi Hyde claimed the women's top spot in 20:14, placing 8th overall. Meghan Shepherd took home 2nd place in 22:10.

Taylor's not the only one vying for the top points spot in both MAGP Series. Cindy Goodman is having a good run, literally, presently place 1st in the Endurance points series and 2nd in the sprint points series after her 3rd place finish at Dove. If Goodwin wins big at the Red Ribbon 5K, she could take over both series top women spots.

Matt Novacich Photo by Julie Black
Matt Novacich gets a very special award, Photo by Julie Black
Honorable Mention: Today's Hero
Honorable mention goes to Matt Novacich, who received a special achievement award for his outstanding spirit and exceptional ability. Read more about Matt's story. His inspiring story has touched many MAGP'ers this year.

After the run and walk concluded, the kids took flight in their awesome Kid's K shirts. Crowds of parents, grandparents, and others lined the traffic free blacktop for the children's races, run in heats according to age and distance. It seemed to be the most exciting part of the day, and certainly the most unpredictable.

This event is annual. It offers great shirts, excellent post-race activities, with a safe, traffic free course for the 5K run and walk, and kid's races. If you missed it this year, don't miss it in 2008.