Community gathers in tribute to fallen heroes at Bobcat Memorial 5K



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Five-year-old Serena and her four-year-old sister Sylvie amazed the crowd with their singing of the Star Spangled Banner at the start of this year's Bobcat 5K Memorial Run/Walk in Plymouth. (Photo by Donna Rhodes) (click for larger version)
May 31, 2017
PLYMOUTH — The OSSIPEE Wellness group from Plymouth Regional High School held their eighth annual Bobcat Memorial 5K race last Sunday morning, raising funds for special scholarships that benefit graduates of the school each year.

Plymouth High alumni Capt. Doug DiCenzo (Class of '95), SPC Marc Decoteau (Class of '08) and MSG Jared Van Aalst (Class of '93) each lost their lives while serving the nation in Iraq and Afghanistan and those scholarships now honor their memory and sacrifices.

OSSIPEE standards for the seven dimensions of wellness: occupational, social, spiritual, intellectual, physical, emotional and environmental health and wellness. Therefore, to help promote healthy lifestyles and benefit graduates in the next step of their education, the Bobcat Memorial 5K was formed and continues to grow in both size and enthusiasm.

"This just seems to get bigger and better every year," said OSSIPEE leader and PRHS Health Educator Denise McGlone.

Registration fees, tee shirt sales and raffles all helped boost the scholarship fund that day and people donated generously toward the cause.

Each year, the run/walk event begins with the singing of the National Anthem. This time, the crowd was treated to its performance by five-year-old Serena and her four-year-old sister Sylvie of Plymouth who bravely belted out the song for all to hear.

"They learned all the words by watching the Bruins games with me," their proud dad said after congratulating the two girls.

From the tiniest tots to senior members of the community, approximately 200 people, as well as a few dogs, then headed out on the course, running, walking, or riding along in wagons and strollers. Many took part "just for the health of it" but tee shirts were also awarded to the first males and females over the finish line in the categories of Adults, Teens and Youngsters.

With the route leading everyone through downtown Plymouth then back to the high school, McGowen said she was grateful for the Boy Scouts from Troop 56 who served as crossing guards at each of the intersections. She also wished to thank the event sponsors, Lucky Dog Tavern and Grill, Rand's Hardware, Biederman's Deli and Pub, Hannaford supermarket, Walmart and Dunkin Donuts for their sponsorship of the race.

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