COPPER MOUNTAIN, Colo. – Senior Airman Jaret McGowan, right, 460th Medical Group, spreads sand over the fire to help keep it down during Warrior Dash Aug. 18, 2012. The fire jump was one of 12 obstacles runners were faced with. Approximately 140 Team Buckley members volunteered during the event, which supports St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Gross)
COPPER MOUNTAIN, Colo. – Team Buckley volunteers pull packets for runners as they check into Warrior Dash Aug. 18, 2012. The extreme 5K race consisted of 12 obstacles and event proceeds went toward supporting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Gross)
COPPER MOUNTAIN, Colo. – Staff Sgt. Nicholas Rau, 460th Public Affairs, looks for a participant’s packet as they check in for Warrior Dash Aug. 18, 2012. About 140 Team Buckley members made the approximate 180-mile round trip to volunteer for the extreme 5K race. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Christopher Gross)
by Senior Airman Christopher Gross
460th Space Wing Public Affairs
8/22/2012 - BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- About 140 Team Buckley members made the approximately 180-mile round trip to the Copper Mountain from the Buckley area Aug. 18 and 19 to lend the Warrior Dash staff a helping hand as they held another extreme 5K races.
Volunteers worked the check-in tents where they handed runners their packets and gear, water stations, refueled the fire and ensured the runner's safety, along with several other jobs.
A majority of the proceeds from Warrior Dash went toward supporting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. St. Jude is a center for the research and treatment of pediatric cancer and other terminal childhood diseases.
Thousands of participants is the reason why the 12 obstacle race required as much help as possible. Runners jumped over fire, crawled through mud, climbed cargo nets along with many other obstacles.
A strong volunteer staff ensured Warrior Dash ran efficiently and it allowed for those proceeds to be donated since they didn't have to hand paychecks out to a large staff.
The Warrior Dash staff seemed very thankful for the strong support they received.
"We love having them here," said Cassie Bernard, Warrior Dash staff worker, about the volunteers. "They make our jobs a lot easier. They help smooth everything out and they're great with the participants. Everyone is happy to be here."
Warriors, young and old, participated in the event, creating a family oriented environment.
"We're all about the family aspect," said Bernard. "So, we want anyone and everyone who wants to run the race."
The race also benefited Buckley's Dining Out. The dining out is scheduled for Sept. 28 at 5:30 p.m. at the Leadership Development Center.
The staff offered monetary group donations as an incentive for volunteers.
"Money went toward fundraising for the dining out, which is taking place of this year's Air Force Ball," said Senior Airman Elisa Labbe, Buckley Dining Out committee member.
Labbe said the nearly $3,000 raised during the weekend will pay for engraved scotch glasses, centerpieces and a disc jockey.
Leaving money for next year's fund is also a dining out committee goal.
"We don't want the next group to start with nothing," said Labbe. "We want them to have a little bit of money left over so they have a starting point."
The current committee started with nothing in the bank, and Labbe said it was difficult to get the funds rolling, but this volunteer opportunity helped a lot.
Aside from raising money for the dining out, Labbe said she hoped everyone who participated was able to enjoy the day and hope they were glad they had the chance to give back to a community that gives so much to Team Buckley.
"It was a great opportunity to go out and see Colorado and have fun. You're not really thinking about the fact you're volunteering because it was so fun," said Labbe. "I hope all the people that came out to volunteer for Warrior Dash attend the dining out to see what they contribute to."