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Sunday, March 21, 2010 -- Grafton, WV
Grafton 5-Mile Run, 2-Mile Walk, Kids Run (iPO Event Id#: 12579)

2010: [Details] [Coverage] [Photos] [Overall Results] [Results by Class]

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Jogging Down Memory Lane

Article and photos by J.R. Petsko

Grafton 5-Miler photo by JR Petsko
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In 1974 I was born in a small hospital in Germany. My mother and father found themselves in Europe due to my father being drafted into Vietnam.

Four months later in Grafton, West Virginia, the Grafton 5-miler had its first running.

Thirty-five years later, present day, and the event and still going strong. The 2010 edition was full of warm temperatures and sunshine. Wonder what the weather was like 35 years ago?

The race showed an increase in attendance for 2010 and I am sure the weather after a long snowy winter sure helped get folks out of the house.

At the starting line 110 total runners and walkers prepared to hit the road in what was the first running event for most of them in 2010.

From the start it was David McCollam of Bridgeport, Matthew Bright of Morgantown, Derek Bolyard of Elkins and Brian Forester all battling for the early lead.

For the women, it was going to be a fight between Heathers. Heather Parks of Bruceton Mills, and Heather McDaniel, a local lady from Grafton. Both were gunning for a victory in the early season event on Saturday.

Grafton 5-Miler photo by JR Petsko
See more Grafton Race photos
The course was a loop event so once the runners were out of site I headed to the finish to see who survived the course the best. Just over 20 minutes later the first returning runner came into my view.

It was David McCollam running a blistering pace of 5:12 miles. McCollam took the men's overall win in a time of 26 minutes flat. Second across the line was Matthew Bright in 27 minutes and 13 seconds and in third was Derek Bolyard one minute behind in a time of 28 minutes and 13 seconds.

For the women, Heather Parks turned out to be the faster of the two Heathers on this day. Parks crossed the line in 31 minutes 29 seconds.

Then 20 seconds behind Parks was McDaniel. The local runner had a great race to claim second on the day taking two minutes off her time from 2008. Third went to Megan Schuerger, behind the two leaders with a time of 32 minutes and 14 seconds.

For the walkers it was William Cunningham first, Rudy Vincent in second and Roger Manuto finsihing third for the men. Cindy O'Malley and Charlene Horan took first and second respectively for the women.

It was a great day in Grafton for the 5-miler and I myself can't wait to see the 36th annual race next year!

Thanks to the sponsors, Grafton City Hospital and Tygart Valley Rehab and Fitness.