Last updated: February 17. 2013 6:09AM - 79 Views

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WILKES-BARRE -- Both the weather and the season fully cooperated in the Help Our Warriors 5k Run/Walk on Sunday morning in Kirby Park.

The event was hosted on behalf of the Wilkes University Gold Bar Club, an organization which supports men and women aspiring to become Air Force Officers. The Gold Bar Club also supports the Wounded Warriors Project, which assists those servicemen who have been injured during active service to their country.

The mission of the project is to raise awareness and enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members, to help servicemen reach out to each other, and to provide direct services when necessary.

"This is a great opportunity for the community to show support for local and national United States military personnel," said Tyler Ardary, coordinator of the event and member of the Gold Bar Club.

John Draxler, president of the club, said that he was impressed with the turnout for this first run. Approximately 60 participants took part in the event, both runners and walkers.

Troy Kemmerer, U.S. Navy recruiter, traveled from Williamsport to participate. He said that it was well worth the drive to take part in the event that supported fellow military personnel and their families.

"Its a beautiful morning to show support for our troops," said Kemmerer.

Stephanie Walski, Shavertown, and her son, Sean Walski, were participating in honor of family members who have served in the military.

Both said they hope the event would become an annual one and they would continue to participate in the future.

"Its nice to see college kids recognizing sacrifices made by members of the military," said Sean Walski.

Captain Marc Honrath, recruiter at Wilkes University, lauded the university for its commitment to former and current service members.

Many attendees commented on the beauty of the course itself, which wound through the park and included parts of the levee, allowing runners to enjoy the Susquehanna River.

Draxler, pleased with both the turnout and the spirit of the event, said that he hopes the event would be an annual one, supporting both Wilkes' Gold Bar Club and the Wounded Warriors Project.

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