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National Guard man an awesome running station

National Guard Association of Washington 5K Run/Walk results

National Guardsmen took to the streets April 13 to support emergency assistance fund.

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"Fitness overall is important  for any branch of service and just because we are traditional Guardsmen doesn't mean we shouldn't get out on a Saturday and stay in shape while competing in a fun environment," said NGAW 5K winner CPT Dalrymple of the Western Air Defense Sector.

A group of volunteers and Servicemember volunteers helped organize this year's National Guard Association of Washington (NGAW) 5K Run/Walk to help raise funds for the Minuteman Emergency Assistance Fund (MEAF).

"I think anytime you can contribute to a meaningful charity, especially one that gives back to our Guard community, it makes it important," said the event's POC MSgt Bryan Villanueva.

Along with organizing/volunteering in this year's NGAW 5K, Villanueva is also the NCOIC Weapons of Griffin Flight for JBLM's Western Air Defense Sector.

"An event like this also has several positive side-effects including building camaraderie, fitness and relationships with members of your community," said MSgt Villanueva.

The overall purpose of this Saturday morning physical fitness run is to raise money for the Minuteman Emergency Assistance Fund (MEAF).

The MEAF provides grants to Washington State Guard members whose families are living on reduced incomes while the Servicemember is deployed overseas.

The run also help raise funds for the upcoming Annual Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States (EANGUS) Conference.

"EANGUS has only one mission-to provide a voice on Capitol Hill on enlisted National Guard issues," a statement from EANGUS President, CSM John F. Helbert.  "These issues affect not only National Guard but all Reserve component members."

This year's EANGUS Annual Conference will take place Aug. 18-21 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

The National Guard Association of Washington is a non-profit organization that advocates preserving the welfare and interests of Washington National Guard members and their families.

Between 2010 and 2012 the NGAW was able to award $120,000 in Minuteman Emergency Assistance grants to over 300 Army and Air National Guard members and families.

This makes events like these that help raise money for the NGAW that much more important.

"It's a great course, they put on a great venue for this and that's important when you run in races," said CPT Dalrymple. "To have volunteers there that are helpful and a course that's enjoyable running around American Lake."

The top three times for the officially 5.19K were CPT Dalrymple at 19:54, civilian Bruce Robie in 2nd at 21:10 and CPT Peter Hickman coming in 3rd at 21:26.

The top three male and female finishers received a custom NGAW 5K medal.

The first place male and female winners both received a voucher for a free pair of running shoes at South Sound Running, Tacoma.

South Sound Running also donated a new Nike GPS running watch that was raffled off at the event's conclusion.

It appears to be a benefit having a Saturday event that promotes fitness while assisting with funds for those families of the community's deployed Servicemembers.

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