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Chuck and Belinda Lawrence, at left, were presented with the Distinguished Service Award by hospital CEO Greg Roraff and Claire Connor, RN. The award, an honor normally given out at the BHMH annual meeting, is in recognition of all their continued support of BHMH.
Runners take their mark at the fourth annual BHMH Fun Run on Saturday, August 4.
Greg Roraff, CEO of Blue Hill Memorial Hospital takes a turn in the dunk tank to help raise funds for the hospital’s cancer screening program. See story and more photos on page 2.
by Claire Stanton
“On your marks, get set, go!” announced Anne Piazza, coordinator of the Annual Blue Hill Memorial Hospital Fun Run. The runners lined up at the starting line sprang forward, and, just before 8:30 in the morning on Saturday, August 4, the 5K race was off.
Less than 20 minutes later, the runners began to return, with Nikos Christ leading the pack, finishing in 17 minutes and 8 seconds. He was followed by Matt Homich, second, and Evan Dethier, third. Phoebe Markle was the first woman to finish, with a time of 19 minutes and 23 seconds, and Katie Schmidt and Janet Feldman came in second and third for women.
Managing the finish line were Chuck and Belinda Lawrence, owners of TradeWinds Marketplace. Following the run, BHMH presented them with the Distinguished Service Award, an honor normally given out at the BHMH annual meeting.
Kelley Columber, advancement associate at BHMH and volunteer at the Fun Run, explained this decision, saying, “Chuck and Belinda Lawrence do so much for the community. In the case of the hospital, they give a penny of every gallon of gas sold at TradeWinds to the oncology program. They have an incredible community spirit.”
Another addition to this year’s Fun Run was the Dunk Tank benefiting community cancer screening, an outreach program created this year by hospital employees that helps provide free cancer screening to members of the community. Dunk-ees included Greg Roraff, CEO of Blue Hill Memorial Hospital, who announced that he was “loving every second of it.”
The total number of runners registered for the 5K run came to 183, a higher turnout than in previous years, despite lower preregistration numbers. The number does not include those who participated in the one-mile community walk that began at 8 a.m.
This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Blue Hill Memorial Hospital Fun Run, an event that benefits the Wellness Program at the hospital. A committee in charge of community outreach at BHMH came up with the idea of a Fun Run and Wellness Program and brought in Anne Piazza, a volunteer community member to organize it. Piazza readily accepted, on the one condition that she run a year-round “boot camp,” a training and wellness program as well. Participants in Piazza’s program range from those training with her for five years, now working toward running a marathon, to a few that joined straight out of cardiac rehabilitation at BHMH to train for this year’s Fun Run.
The Fun Run is free for participants in the “boot camp,” and all money raised by the event feeds back into the Wellness Program, sponsoring both the run and other programs as well, such as the Women’s Health Fair. The sponsors of the event include Affiliated Medical Healthcare Services, the Bay School, Cadillac Mountain Sports, Coastal Eyecare, Hale and Hamlin LLC and Healthy Peninsula.
The Fun Run, as Piazza reminded the runners just before the start, is not just an hour-long, annual event, but a reminder of all those in the community who have participated in the training program, and “made the decision to change their lifestyle.”