Team Red White and Blue encourages veterans to keep a healthy, social lifestyle

On Veterans Day this Friday, an American flag will end a 4,216-mile journey in Tampa, Florida, after passing through 10 states, including Arizona, in the Old Glory Relay.

Through 62 teams of runners, bikers and walkers, the torch-style relay will have passed through the hands of about 3,000 people by the time it finishes the journey, which began on Sept. 11 in Redmond, Wash.

Phoenix ran its leg on Oct. 4, carrying the flag through Tempe, then overnight to a team from Tucson, waiting to continue the mission as the sun rose near Picacho Peak on Oct. 5.

The relay is one of the biggest fundraisers for Team Red White and Blue, which course director Donnie Starling describes as "a veterans-serving non-profit that enriches the lives of American veterans through social and physical activities.” Though the relay is free to enter, a combination of crowdfunding and donations helped to raise $436,000 from last year's event.

A healthy environment for vets

Phoenix Team RWB chapter captain Juan Jimenez (right) delivers the American flag to the rendezvous point in downtown Tempe on Oct. 4, 2016. (Photo: Hannah Gaber/The Republic)

Phoenix Team RWB chapter captain Juan Jimenez (right) delivers the American flag to the rendezvous point in downtown Tempe on Oct. 4, 2016. (Photo: Hannah Gaber/The Republic)

For Marine Corps veteran and Phoenix Team RWB captain Juan Jimenez, the impact is personal. Jimenez ran Old Glory into Tempe before stopping for a social event with relay participants and supporters.

"I served six years in the military, I get out of the military and I'm going to college," Jimenez says. "Here I am as a freshman in college as a 22-year-old when everybody that's around me are a bunch of 18-year-old freshmen. So obviously, we haven't had the same experiences in life. On the weekends, all they're thinking about is where am I gonna go to have a good time, and I'm thinking where am I gonna go to study. Because if I don't study, and I don't get my degree, I already know what's out there for me."

Jimenez says he spent that time without many friends, and the consequences of isolation and seeking out the company of mostly other veterans  can be dark. It's a familiar situation to many veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and one for which many find themselves unprepared.

"Next thing you know, you're having a couple of beers, and now you're thinking about what happened overseas, and your mind isn't right." Jimenez says. "After a while, you come to think about it and it's like, man, this probably isn't healthy."

'I was just hooked'

Shawn Cleary (holding flag in center) delivers the flag to the Tucson Team RWB near Picacho Peak in the early morning hours of Oct. 5, 2016. The flag completes its 4,216-mile journey in Tampa on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. (Photo: Hannah Gaber/The Republic)

Shawn Cleary (holding flag in center) delivers the flag to the Tucson Team RWB near Picacho Peak in the early morning hours of Oct. 5, 2016. The flag completes its 4,216-mile journey in Tampa on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. (Photo: Hannah Gaber/The Republic)

But trail running is. So is training for a 5K, or a marathon, or a triathlon. And it's those activities, in a mixed environment of civilians and veterans, where they can talk and relate about the interests they share, that Team RWB and the Old Glory Relay offers.

For Shawn Cleary, who delivered the flag to the Tucson team to finish out the Phoenix leg, it's also an opportunity to get to know a culture he wasn't a part of as a civilian, but had always respected as a military child.

"My life before Team RWB was kind of a college lifestyle," Cleary says. "It started about two and a half years ago, I wanted to get healthy again, and I was starting to run." A friend suggested Cleary run with team RWB. "I was just hooked," he says.

Cleary and Jimenez now train for triathlons together, and help others who ask for it. But, they say the ones who benefit most from helping others are themselves.

Source: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/tempe/2016/11/10/veterans-run-american-flag-through-arizona/91763756/

Old Glory visits en route to Tampa

The Old Glory Relay came to town last Friday, spending the night in Port St. Joe after heading off to Tampa last Saturday.

The Old Glory Relay came to town last Friday, spending the night in Port St. Joe after heading off to Tampa last Saturday.

The relay began Sept. 11 and will end in Tampa on Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

The relay involves 62 teams running the American flag from Seattle, WS to Tampa, FL, 4,216 miles.

The Old Glory Relay is a fundraiser for Team Red White Blue veterans’ outreach. Team RWV is a national non-profit with a mission of connecting veterans to their community through physical and social activity.

This is the third annual relay and is being sponsored by Microsoft.

The event began at sunrise on Sept. 11 and the relay has been covered in national media as the relay makes its way south and east.

After a welcoming at CVS, the relay participants made their way to VFW Post 10069 for dinner and then left early Saturday morning.

 

Source: http://www.starfl.com/news/20161110/old-glory-visits-en-route-to-tampa

Veterans carry the American flag across the nation

A team of military veterans has created a running relay team called Team Red White and Blue.

This relay, aimed at connecting veterans to their community, is carrying the American Flag across the country.

The Panama City portion of the relay will begin Friday, November 4th at the PCB Harley-Davidson dealership at 7 a.m.

There are six people per relay leg and there are 24 legs, each around 2 miles long.

They have about 50 miles to run with the Flag between PCB and Port St. Joe.

The relay will have four support stations across Bay County, where the community is invited to show their support for the cause.

- 7:00 a.m. Harley Davidson of Panama City Beach
- 8:00 a.m. Beachwalk Center
- 8:30 a.m. St. Andrews First Baptist Church
- 9:30 a.m. Bay County Fairgrounds
- 11:00 a.m. Bonita Bay

The veterans will also be making a stop at North Bay Haven Elementary School around 9:15 a.m., where the students will participate in a connection event.

 

Source: http://www.wjhg.com/content/news/Harley-Old--399811981.html

Stars, stripes and strides: Local runners participate in cross-country run

The sun was just beginning to rise Thursday when members of the Fort Walton Beach High School marching band and several dozen other folks gathered in the Starbucks parking lot in Uptown Station.

Their mission was to give some patriotic athletes a proper send-off as they began Day 54 of the Old Glory Relay — a massive effort to carry a single American flag across the United States. Coordinated by Team Red, White and Blue, a nonprofit organization that enriches the lives of veterans through social and physical activity, the relay began in Seattle on Sept. 11 and will finish in Tampa on Veterans Day.

“We have about 20 participants from our area,” said Heather Sorsby Motschenbacher, the athletic director for the local chapter of Team RWB. “We’re going to be carrying the flag 51 miles in stages from here to our next stop in Panama City.”

The local participants are part of a 10-state, 4,216-mile trek that has seen more than 7,000 people come in contact with Old Glory in some fashion.

“This is all about connecting folks to the American flag,” said Donnie Starling, Team RWB’s national development project manager. “One hand-off after another, under the shade of Old Glory.”

In addition to raising awareness about Team RWB and its activities, participants in the relay have raised money for the organization across the country.

“We were amazed at the reception we’ve received from local sponsors,” Motschenbacher said. “We set a goal of raising $500, and we ended up with more than $1,500.”

 

Runners for Team Red, White and Blue are escorted across Brooks Bridge on Thursday morning by an Okaloosa Island fire truck at the start Day 54 of the Old Glory Relay. The relay is a fundraiser to benefit the veterans outreach organization Team Red, White and Blue. Runners are carrying the flag more than 4,200 miles from Seattle to Tampa. 

Runners for Team Red, White and Blue are escorted across Brooks Bridge on Thursday morning by an Okaloosa Island fire truck at the start Day 54 of the Old Glory Relay. The relay is a fundraiser to benefit the veterans outreach organization Team Red, White and Blue. Runners are carrying the flag more than 4,200 miles from Seattle to Tampa. 

Robert Maher holds the American flag as he and other runners for Team Red, White and Blue prepare to start Thursday's leg of the Old Glory Relay from Uptown Station in Fort Walton Beach.

Robert Maher holds the American flag as he and other runners for Team Red, White and Blue prepare to start Thursday's leg of the Old Glory Relay from Uptown Station in Fort Walton Beach.

Heaven Carroll, left, and Heather Sorsby Motschenbacher hold the American flag to be carried as Fort Walton Beach High School band members play the national anthem at the Uptown Station Starbuck's Thursday morning before the start of Day 54 of the Old Glory Relay. The flag left Seattle on Sept. 11 and will travel more than 4,200 miles before it arrives in Tampa on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. 

Heaven Carroll, left, and Heather Sorsby Motschenbacher hold the American flag to be carried as Fort Walton Beach High School band members play the national anthem at the Uptown Station Starbuck's Thursday morning before the start of Day 54 of the Old Glory Relay. The flag left Seattle on Sept. 11 and will travel more than 4,200 miles before it arrives in Tampa on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. 

 

 

Source: http://www.nwfdailynews.com/news/20161103/stars-stripes-and-strides-local-runners-participate-in-cross-country-run

Veterans carry the American flag across the nation

A team of military veterans has created a running relay team called Team Red White and Blue.

This relay, aimed at connecting veterans to their community, is carrying the American Flag across the country.

The Panama City portion of the relay will begin Friday, November 4th at the PCB Harley-Davidson dealership at 7 a.m.

There are six people per relay leg and there are 24 legs, each around 2 miles long.

They have about 50 miles to run with the Flag between PCB and Port St. Joe.

The relay will have four support stations across Bay County, where the community is invited to show their support for the cause.

- 7:00 a.m. Harley Davidson of Panama City Beach
- 8:00 a.m. Beachwalk Center
- 8:30 a.m. St. Andrews First Baptist Church
- 9:30 a.m. Bay County Fairgrounds
- 11:00 a.m. Bonita Bay

The veterans will also be making a stop at North Bay Haven Elementary School around 9:15 a.m., where the students will participate in a connection event.

For more information, view Kayla's interview.

 

Source: http://www.wjhg.com/content/news/Harley-Old--399811981.html

Old Glory Relay passing through South MS

Patriotism is on display this weekend along the shores of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. If you drove down Highway 90 Saturday, you probably saw the American flag carried by two joggers, escorted by local police. 

It's part of the Old Glory Relay that started in Seattle, WA on September 11 and will end in Tampa, FL on Veterans Day, November 11. In that time, 62 teams will have carried the American flag a total of 4,216 miles.

The flag made a stop in Gulfport Saturday night before heading to Alabama Sunday morning.

The Old Glory Relay is a fundraiser to benefit Team Red White Blue, a veterans’ outreach organization that works to connect veterans to their communities through physical and social activities.

 

Source: http://www.live5news.com/story/33513760/old-glory-relay-passing-through-south-ms