Veterans Run For Those Who Can’t

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This story was originally published by The Intelligencer.

WHEELING — Carrying 30 pounds in a backpack, other equipment, and with the faces and names of her friends pinned to her back, Tiffany Stephen geared up to run in the Saturday morning heat.

Stephen, a 13-year U.S. Army veteran, was supported by Team RWB before the race as she prepared, carrying a large, unfurled American flag with her. Stephen has run the Ogden Newspapers Half Marathon Classic three times in four years, and she said she runs in remembrance of those she has lost.

“It’s Memorial Day, and I spent 13 years in the Army, serving in Iraq twice,” she said. “I lost squad, friends, and people close to me. There’s a lot of other people who are here who have, too.”

“Team RWB represents all prior service members, and that’s just why I’m doing it, too,” she added.

Stephen added that she was carrying paper and pens for use by anyone who would like to contribute to her memorial run.

“I have a paper for people to write down names of anyone they want as a memorial during the race, so they can be seen,” she said. “I carry a marker, so while I’m running by, they can add them.”