Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
Posted: 05/6/2013 1:00 AM | Comments: 0
Last Modified: 05/6/2013 9:04 AM | Updates
The 15 guys in the neon orange T-shirts with big black letters "Run for Rick" were easy to spot Sunday at Assiniboine Park.
They had a mission, as did the others among the 2,700 runners at the Winnipeg Police Service's ninth annual half-marathon and two-person relay in support of Cops For Cancer (Winnipeg Iron Cops) on Sunday.
The guys in orange were soccer players running with their buddy and in the memory of his dad, former marathoner Rick Smoke. So when the last one crossed the finish line, Smoke's widow and son found their emotions close to the surface.
"It's an honour to Rick and it's an honour to Scott that his friends... ," Carole paused, her voice cracking as she struggled for words.
Her son, Scott, said he'd never run a marathon in his life and only made the decision a few weeks before his father died suddenly. He never expected his friends to join him.
"I'd never run a marathon before, and once my dad passed away, some of my friends and the soccer team volunteered to run in his memory," Scott said.
The guys made their promise come true Sunday.
Smoke, 59, died unexpectedly in February after a freak complication following routine surgery.
The effort by Scott's friends moved mother and son beyond the power of words. In the end, they shared a hug, tears welling in their eyes.
Under mild skies, the race started shortly after 8 a.m. just east of the Assiniboine Park footbridge after a moment of silence to remember the tragic events at the Boston Marathon last month.
The second wave of runners started at 8:30 a.m.
The odds-on favourite for the Winnipeg Police Service was Sgt. Jim Anis, a marathoner who'd raced in Boston last month.
In the end, he lost to a cadet recruit by a mere eight seconds among the cops who ran, but he said this year was about more than running.
"I dedicated this run to my son and to Boston," Anis said.
On April 15, the police sergeant passed the finish line and collected his wife among the spectators half an hour before pressure-cooker bombs exploded killing three people and injuring more than 260 at the Boston Marathon.
That close brush was followed days later by another one.
Anis said his son, Jason, 15, was cycling when he was hit by a car going 70 kilometres an hour on Bishop Grandin Boulevard. He suffered a concussion but no serious injuries.
"We have gone through a lot and we're just trying to carry on normally," he said.
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 6, 2013 A5
Updated on Monday, May 6, 2013 at 9:04 AM CDT: adds fact box
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
Governor takes National Guard out of Ferguson
Heavy rains cause flooding around Winnipeg
Dozens gather to honour memory of Faron Hall
Far from last dance
Three mayoral candidates snubbed by Downtown BIZ
Missing, murdered women a job for police: PM
Back to B.C. for CEO's family
PCs criticize government spending on 'boastful' ads at construction projects
Havixbeck wants Mealshare program for Winnipeg to help soup kitchens
Companies must be transparent: watchdog
Most appeals granted, benefits tribunal says
Al's Brink expected to take the field against former Bomber teammates Friday
Gas leak forces evacuations in the Maples
Vegas trip, payouts questioned
American Ebola doc urges help fighting outbreak
Israel kills 3 Hamas military commanders in Gaza
Province launches consultations on new chartered professional accountant designation
Hwy. 1 reopened after collision
Man sought in connection with gas station robbery on Kenaston
Man suffers serious injuries after getting stabbed in Carlton and Graham area
Police looking for teen who groped woman near Netley Street and North Drive
'Pulling out all of the stops'
Man sought after Portage la Prairie home invasion
Man charged after cellphone found recording in women's washroom
Manitoba farmers expect solid soybean harvest, but decline in other crops
Local doctor pioneered child-abuse investigations
Have we reached a turning point?
Harper embarking on annual northern tour
Police looking for man after girls approached
Man charged after drug bust on Sargent turns up marijuana, cash
Rom-com’s title raises eyebrows in the U.S.
Dreary weekend in store for southern Manitoba
Imam to draw attention to threat of ISIS
Firefighters battle overnight blazes
A Pollyanna approach to teaching environmentalism that’s less depressing
Pleasure in the park
The stories they could tell
Boarders gather in Headingley for national championship
Old TV show gave novelist time and place for Outlander series
Irish peacemaker, ex-premier Reynolds dies at 81