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home > races/results > usa: massachusetts > coming sunday, april 6--the fifth annual run for the troops 5k in andover, massachusetts

Coming Sunday, April 6--The Fifth Annual Run for the Troops 5K in Andover, Massachusetts
Sign up for this special event for a unique cause and enjoy a nice clockwise loop in Andover dedicated to aiding disabled veterans in a very specific and personal way—building specially designed homes for these deserving injured warriors adapted to their exact needs. There are opportunities for runners AND walkers. Be a part of it and join this very special team running to support veterans—it is all about mobility and runners know this best.

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Run for the Troops 5K Website

By Editorial Staff
Posted Tuesday, 1 April, 2014

Run this unique race or complete the 3.1-mile walk, a fundraising event that will help build a unique home, free of charge, for Army Staff Sargent Matt DeWitt of Concord, New Hampshire who lost both arms in Iraq. Please see Matt’s story below. The race will start on Chestnut Street, only a block off Main Street (Route 28) and roll to the east in a nice loop. It finishes near where it began at the Andover Town Offices at 36 Bartlett Street. Families, friends and neighbors, corporate teams and runners of every pace and ability will share in the excitement and in the joy of helping the cause.

Please plan on running. Honor our veterans--be a part of something truly special. Each runner simply signs up and runs, although pledges and donations are certainly welcomed in support of the Homes for Our Troops, a national organization, begun in 2004, committed to building housing for disabled and injured veterans who have unique needs for access and mobility in their everyday lives.

Register right now to take advantage of the free technical shirt especially designed for this race—the first 1,500 receive one. They expect 2,000 this year (up from 1,600 in 2013) for this event which has grown significantly in each of its first four years. All those who complete the 5K will receive a commemorative finisher’s medal, and will be eligible for overall and age group awards.

The fifth annual Run for the Troops, Presented by Century Bank and Massachusetts School of Law, will kick off at 9:00 a.m. on April 6. Packet pick up and late registration will be available at the Doherty Middle School cafeteria on race morning beginning at 7:30 a.m. The middle school is near both start and finish.

Those who are pre-registered, or those who wish to sign up in person before race day (it will save a lot of hassle), can pick up their shirt and race number at Century Bank on Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; or on Saturday, April 5, also at Century Bank from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Take the team challenge: Get your club, social organization or company involved and all teams, all sizes are welcome. There will be a special plaque awarded to the largest team.

In addition to the race, there will be a special fundraising dinner at the Wyndham Hotel, 123 Old River Road, on Friday evening, April 4, 2014 and everyone is welcome to come. It is only $25 per plate or table of 10 for $250. The reception will begin at 6:00 p.m. with dinner served at 7:00 p.m. During the evening there will be a silent auction with sports memorabilia, event tickets, weekend get-aways, and other valuable items. Please see the Race Website to sign up for either the dinner or the race—or both.

Home for Our Troops is a national organization that has built well over 100 homes for disabled veterans and their families, with many more already planned. The home for Matt DeWitt of Concord, NH is specifically aided by this event. In prior years, before the race was founded, the organization built homes for several New England vets, including Massachusetts soldiers Michael Downey of Middleboro, Peter Rooney of Cummington, Brian Fontaine of Plymouth, and Peter Damon of Middleboro.

Since the inception of the race they have concentrated on one veteran’s home each year: In 2011 it was Joey Smith. Josh Bouchard of Granby, MA received his home in 2012, and last year the race and dinner supported building the home of Rhode Island warrior Kevin DuBois.

Help Build a Home this Year for Matt DeWitt
While on his first deployment on the night of July 22, 2003 in Khalidiyah, Iraq, Army Staff Sergeant Matthew DeWitt and members of the 4th Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, came under enemy attack and engaged in a heavy firefight. In the ensuing chaos as Staff Sergeant DeWitt was positioning to take down a suspected enemy’s house, his weapon was struck by a rocket propelled grenade (RPG). This strike left SSG DeWitt with devastating injuries resulting in the amputation of both arms below the elbow, damage to his eardrums and extensive skin grafts to his face, legs and arms.

The father of two enjoys cycling, mountain biking, hunting, and spending time with his family. An avid gardener, Staff Sergeant DeWitt would like to start a farm or open a nursery business. He is also training to compete on the Paralympic cycling team. He and his wife, Catrina, look forward to living in a specially adapted home where he can live independently. “Having a house that is built around my needs so I can have an easier time doing day-to-day things will help ease some of the stress and frustration that comes from having a severe disability for me and my family,” he said. He would like to acknowledge and thank supporters of Homes for Our Troops for contributing to make this possible.

Unique Event for Very Special Needs
This is a unique community event with a 5K run or walk and anyone can participate whether it is your first 5K or 500th.

They will again have food, entertainment and family fun and the whole family can get involved, including watching their favorite runner or walker from the sidewalk and simply cheering and donating.

This event is critically important as a fund raiser for the Homes for Our Troops Program,
It is truly a unique event, a very special race, running for the fifth year in historic Andover. Be an MVP on the "Homes for Our Troops" Team!

Please visit the Event Website at: for tons of information on the course (map), photos, video, donating, sponsorships, contacts, and information about registration and the beneficiaries. Get involved. Get your company involved. You mean to run so run where it has meaning!



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