COLUMBIA SC — Columbia will join the Tunnel to Towers team this year, with a 5K run scheduled Sept. 6 to support first responders and wounded warriors.
The Stephen Siller Tunnel To Towers South Carolina 5K Run & Walk will begin at Colonial Life Arena at 7:30 p.m., avoiding the early September daytime heat. The event is named for Siller, a New York City firefighter and father of five who died at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Siller was off-duty that day, but when he heard about the attack, he strapped on 60 pounds of gear and ran from the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to the World Trade Center.
The Columbia event will be the first of Tunnel to Towers’ 10 races, with others planned in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Orlando, Vero Beach, Fla., and Nashville on Sept. 7, in Cincinnati on Sept. 8, in Savannah on Sept. 14, in Mobile, Ala., on Sept. 15, in Raleigh on Sept. 21 and in New York City on Sept. 28.
While the event originally was designed to celebrate first responders, its focus has been broadened to include military members. Runners are encouraged to raise funds which go to the building of smart homes for amputee veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan through the Building for America’s Bravest program. Lexington Medical Center Foundation, which sponsors the race locally, also will use proceeds from the race to promote health care efforts for South Carolina first responders.
Participants can register at www.t2trun.org.