Troops in Afghanistan will be running own version of Fort Worth Race for the Cure

Posted Tuesday, Apr. 02, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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To register for Race for the Cure and or get race schedule information, visit www.komengreaterfortworth.org/komen-race-for-the-cure.

To register for Race for the Cure and or get race schedule information, visit www.komengreaterfortworth.org/komen-race-for-the-cure.

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Army Major Eric R. Peterson wanted to run the Susan G. Komen Greater Fort Worth Race for Cure but that is hard to do while deployed in Afghanistan.

So the Trophy Club native and other U.S. service members will support the annual fundraiser that fights breast cancer with a 5K of their own.

Twelve hours before the Fort Worth race starts at Ridgmar Mall on Saturday morning, 145 servicemen and women will lace up their shoes to run at Camp Phoenix, a military installation outside Kabul.

The troops are calling it a "shadow run," a first for the Fort Worth affiliate.

"These runs are great for morale over here, whether it be a solider trying to stay in shape, or a group of us running for time and bragging rights," Peterson wrote in an email. "It's an hour of time that we get to be almost normal and not wear a service physical fitness uniform and be in a real T-shirt."

Komen officials said Peterson, whose mother and sister still live in North Texas, reached out to the organization in February. Komen volunteers have sent care packages of beef jerky and Girl Scout cookies to the service members, known as Team Spartans.

"We have never had anyone reach out to us like that before, and our participants have gotten excited about it," said Jennifer Wersal, Komen Fort Worth assistant director. "The major is hoping to get us some footage of their run, and our goal is to hopefully show it up on the jumbo screen at the race."

More than 6,650 people have registered for the race, down about 20 percent from this point last year, Wersal said.

Wersal said officials aren't sure why registration is low, but the race, which is usually held the second weekend in April, will occur a week early this year to avoid conflicting with the NASCAR Sprint Cup at Texas Motor Speedway.

Alex Branch, 817-390-7689

Twitter: @albranch1

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