2012 Year in Review..September..Military Hero's. An event to be part of.
LITCHFIELD: The day was perfect, the cause as important as they come.
It was a special day in Litchfield on Sunday afternoon for the Second Annual “Military Hero’s” walk and run at White Memorial in Litchfield as hundreds showed up to help raise funds that will go towards the building of a “Fisher House.”
A Fisher House is a place that military families can stay at while their disabled vet heals with the power of loved ones right at their side.
No more expensive hotels or sleeping in their cars.
All of them would do whatever it took to be at their loved ones side but it sometimes comes with an impossible cost, both emotionally and financially.
Michael Lyn Cappello and Anita Barbero organized the event for the second straight year.
Each of them has a son in the service and both wanted to do something to make a difference in not only their life’s but the life’s of countless others.
Jared Barbero and Matt Cappello are both on active duty at this moment.
A Fisher House is going to be built in West Haven, CT and will be the first such house in the Nutmeg State.
It’s not cheap.
The starting ticket price is three million.
If that amount can be raised, the Fisher House Foundation will give matching funds and a six million dollar home will be completed.
A fully loaded opening ceremony, replete with the Mattatuck Fife and Drum, the NWCT Military Honor Guard and an appearance by the Rat Pack Motorcycle Club made for one spectacular start to a great day.
Susan Strobino, who’s son was injured while serving, told the story of her son and how the Fisher House helped her be near him without another care in the world.
These are not small cubby-sized buildings.
Each family is provided with a safe and secure dwelling that includes a private bedroom and bath, washer and dryer, full kitchen, living room, dining room and a computer room.
As Susan Strobino stated, “Fisher House provided sunshine to my family during a very dark time and we will be forever grateful.”
Nearly 200 participants took part in this heartwarming afternoon that connected people in a way most will never forget.
There were four ways to get involved in this day.
You could run the 5-mile course, something that 29-year old Rocco Botto did faster than anyone one else to win with a time of 30:56, a 6:12 mile average.
He flew past the spectators that awaited the runners return in such a hurry that he had to be identified after he crossed the finish line.
Sophia Rickevicius crossed the line first for the woman with a time of 37:12.
If running was not your gig, a leisurely 5-walk on a beautiful Sunday afternoon might just be to your liking and was the events second choice.
A third element, an adventure run was a big hit for teams and their were a bunch of them led by a team called “Trenman” who finished in the top spot with a time of 38:50 or a 7:46 average mile.
The last way folks could get involved was to volunteer and there were plenty of good folks manning tables with snacks, water, a quick massage or a dog and soda.
Many people want to help out but often struggle with what and how.
This day lent itself to making all those worries go away in a hurry.
By just being on hand, cheering and supporting the runners or handing out water or being a spotter on one of the trails was enough for anyone on hand.
It had a kind of Litchfield Hills Road Race feel to it.
It should if Bill Neller (who was in attendance and helping out, as is his nature) is involved.
Neller, one of the co-founders of the LHRR, knows a thing or two about how to throw an event.
Year three promises to be bigger and better than year two was.
Count on it.
This event has no choice but to succeed considering the love, devotion and caring that exudes from all who are involved.
May the numbers get LHRR-like.
It's the least we can do for those who fight each day to do what we get to do everday in peace.