Courtesy of Art McIrvin, organizing committee member
The Federal Way Community Center hosted the second annual Miles for Meso Washington Memorial 5K Run/Walk on the Fourth of July.
The event was organized by Pat Dyhrman, Diana Stewart and Pat Hatley — three women who lost their husbands to mesothelioma, a non-curable cancer caused by the exposure to asbestos. Dick Dyhrman was a geologist for the Weyerhaeuser Company. Bud Hatley was a coach and athletic director for the Federal Way School District. Bob Stewart was a teacher and coach at Federal Way High School.
The run was a tribute to them and all of the other Washington residents who have suffered from this disease.
The event raised over $13,000 for the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. Federal Way’s mayor, Skip Priest, welcomed the 300 participants to the city following the raising of the American flag by Dick Dyhrman’s Boy Scout Troop 174 from Puyallup. The runners were also greeted by Erin Maas, the operations manager for the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation. A children’s fun run preceded the start of the 5-kilometer run.
The course through Celebration Park, the BPA Trail, and the streets around the Community Center and City Hall was closely monitored by course volunteers and the Federal Way Amateur Radio Club.
After the run, a pancake breakfast was provided while the participants awaited the awards and raffle drawings. The overall winner was Mason Fletcher with a time of 17:18. Mason was last year’s fastest runner as well. The top female finisher was Mollee Huisinga, who ran the course in 20:21. Comments from participants were “well organized,” “we had a good time” and “we’ll be back next year.”