• Marshall Mile (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      Marshall Mile (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      The saying goes something like, “Every cloud has a silver lining.” Well, there were lots of clouds on Saturday, March 3, 2018. But there were also lots of silver, and even more gold, when you consider that Olympic silver- and gold-medal Sprinter and PUSD Alumni Alice Brown-Harris was present to support the Marshall Fundamental Athletic Boosters and raise money at the inaugural Marshall Fun(d) Run event.

      By Felita Kealing

      For the first time in recent history, Marshall Fundamental Secondary School hosted a walk-a-thon to raise money for improvements to the track and playing field used by middle- and high-school Physical Education students and Marshall Athletes. In attendance were representatives from our boys’ and girls’ sports teams, coaches, and parent volunteers. Student volunteers from the National Honors Society (NHS), Unidos, the Associated Student Body (ASB), and some athletic programs were on deck — walking, running, selling concessions, counting laps, and at times sheltering under the canopies during brief rain showers. According to the event’s co-chairperson Eliza Jane Whitman, “I am thrilled with the enthusiasm of the Marshall students. Their dedication and their interest in improving the school is high and impressive.”

      The Marshall Fun(d) Run event took place between 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. At 7:45, the first runner, 6th grade student Gloria Granados and her little sister, Paulette, joined the parents and student volunteers to begin their trips around the track. At 9:00, the student athletes that were present participated in the Marshall Mile, which was a race around the residential block that surrounds the school. Junior Jonathan Garcia completed with the fastest time of 5:11. Following the mile run, Jonathan — along with Christopher Gonzalez, Miguel Magana and Eric Vargas — completed the equivalency of 50 laps around the Marshall Fundamental track.

      (L-R) Olympic medalist Alice Brown-Harris and Sarah Williams (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      (L-R) Olympic medalist Alice Brown-Harris and Sarah Williams (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      Throughout the morning, students and parents took pictures and conversed with Ms. Brown-Harris about her Olympic experience, travel, school, and family. When student Sarah Williams asked, “Who influenced you?”’ Alice was quick to mention Ms. Eddie Newman, her teacher when she attended McKinley Middle School. Dorothy Brown, Alice’s mother, mentioned, “Alice wanted to go to the Olympics since she was seven years old.” At the time, Alice was considering being a gymnast. However, when Ms. Newman commented to Alice that she could run fast, that was all the motivation she needed to shift gears, and from that day forward, she began to run. In the 1984 Olympics, she was the first leg of the United States women’s 4 x 100m relay team, which won gold in Los Angeles. She won Silver in the 100m dash in that same Olympic games. At the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, history was made when again the US women’s 4 x 100m relay team won gold for the second consecutive Summer Olympic games — this time with the quartet of Alice Brown, Sheila Echols, Florence Griffith-Joyner, and Evelyn Ashford.

      The Marshall Fun(d) Run event was sponsored by the Marshall Fundamental Athletic Boosters organization. Participants got family and friends to sponsor them by donating a specific sum of money for every lap they walked or ran around the track. The goal of the event was to try and raise $50,000. However, probably because of the damp weather, there were fewer participants than anticipated. Still, the event raised $10, 000, and according to Wayne Hammack, athletic booster chairperson, “The Marshall Fun(d) Run was a huge success , especially for its first year. Next year will be even better.”

      Marshall Fun(d) Run co-chairperson Rex Moats stated, “We had fun working with Marshall Fundamental’s community to raise funds. We still have more work to do.”

      Marshall Athletic Boosters (L-R) Meg Cox, Secretary; Jeff Arnst, Treasurer, Olympic medalist Alice Brown-Harris, and Wayne Hammack, Chairperson (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      Marshall Athletic Boosters (L-R) Meg Cox, Secretary; Jeff Arnst, Treasurer, Olympic medalist Alice Brown-Harris, and Wayne Hammack, Chairperson (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      You can still donate to the Athletic Boosters here.

      Felita Kealing is Asst. Coordinator, Marketing, Student Recruitment, and Community Relations at Marshall Fundamental Secondary School.

      The Marshall Fundamental Athletic Boosters is a parent and volunteer organization with the mission to support and promote all the school’s sports teams, to encourage and recognize outstanding scholastic achievement, sportsmanship, and character, both on and off the playing field, and to contribute to the spirit and enthusiasm of our student athletes. Fundraising efforts enable the Boosters to provide assistance with the purchase of team equipment and uniforms, improvements to fields and facilities, tournament fees, coach-determined student assistance, and other sports-related initiatives at Marshall Fundamental Secondary School.

      Student athlete Jonathan Garcia with Olympian gold and silver medalist Alice Brown-Harris (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      Student athlete Jonathan Garcia with Olympian gold and silver medalist Alice Brown-Harris (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      Student athletes Miles Keailng (L), and Preston Kealing (R) with Olympian medalist Alice Brown-Harris (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      Student athlete Kai Repella with Olympian medalist Alice-Brown-Harris (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      Student athlete Kai Repella with Olympian medalist Alice-Brown-Harris (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).

      Student athletes, (L-R) Aude Claire Moats, Antoine Moats, and PUSD Alumni Atticus Moats with Alice-Brown Harris.

      Student athletes, (L-R) Aude Claire Moats, Antoine Moats, and PUSD Alumni Atticus Moats with Alice-Brown Harris.

      6th grade student Gloria Granados and her sister Paulette (Photo - Felita R. Kealing).

      6th grade student Gloria Granados and her sister Paulette (Photo – Felita R. Kealing).


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